Surinam Horned Frog Fact File


The Surinam horned frog is named for the horn like protections which sit above both eyes. Their head is large and they have a broad mouth.

Their body coloration is highly variable being brown, tan or lime green. Males may be a mixture of these colors but females are typically just tan. The mouth is colored white.

Across the body are a range of small warts. Their outer toes are webbed.

The limbs are short with dark bands of color on them.

Females of this species tend to be larger than males. Their body measures 10-20cm (4-8in) long. They may weigh up to 0.5kg (1lbs).


The Surinam horned frog is a carnivore. Their diet includes a range of arthropods such as ants and beetles along with small animals such as frogs, small reptiles and small mammals.

In their larval form they are also carnivorous. They will feed on other tadpoles.

These animals are sit and wait predators. They will hide among leaf-litter and wait for prey to come to them.

Surinam Horned Frog

Scientific Name

Ceratophrys cornuta

Conservation Status

Least Concern


0.5kg (1lbs)


10-20cm (4-8in)


10 years



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South America is the native home of the Surinam horned frog. Here they can be found in Bolivia; Brazil; Colombia; Ecuador; French Guiana; Guyana; Peru and Suriname. They are thought to occur in Venezuela but this has not yet been proven.


They make their home in forests and wetlands where their is leaf litter for them to burrow among. These animals are found near water such as freshwater marshes or pools.

Surinam Horned Frog


Breeding takes place during the rainy season which is typically around November. Males will call at the beginning of this. '

Females will lay up to 1,000 eggs. They are wrapped around an aquatic plant. These hatch after 3 to 25 days.

Tadpoles will be colored tan with a translucent tail. They have a horny beak which is used to prey on smaller tadpoles from birth.

It will take 90 days for the tadpoles to metamorphose in to frogs.

Despite the large number of eggs laid there is high infant mortality and few of the young survive in to adulthood.

Sexual maturity is reached between 3 and 4 years old.


These frogs are nocturnal. Much of their time is spent buried in leaf-litter with only the head visible waiting for prey to pass them by.

Surinam Horned Frog

Predators and Threats

Habitat loss is another contributing factor to their decline.

These animals are traded as pets. They are less common in the trade than the Argentine pet trade.

Quick facts

This species may also be known as the Amazon horned frog. In the pet trade they are named pac-man frogs.

Surinam Horned Frog

Photo Credits

Top and Bottom

By Bernard DUPONT from FRANCE - Suriname Horned Frog (Ceratophrys cornuta), CC BY-SA 2.0,

Middle One

By H. Zell - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,

Middle Two

By Maarten Sepp - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,


Burnie, D., 2011. Animal. 3rd ed. London: DK

AmphibiaWeb 2010 Ceratophrys cornuta: Surinam Horned Frog <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed Apr 4, 2021.

Enrique La Marca, Luis A. Coloma, Santiago Ron, Claudia Azevedo-Ramos. 2004. Ceratophrys cornuta. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2004: e.T56337A11464093. Downloaded on 04 April 2021.

Richards, L. 2005. "Ceratophrys cornuta" (On-line), Animal Diversity Web. Accessed April 04, 2021 at 2021. Amazon horned frog Facts. [online] Available at: <> [Accessed 5 April 2021].

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