Poison Arrow Frogs, the most common among the Dendrobates family, were reported to have been commonly found in the tropical regions of the Central and South Americas. These regions of the earth that surround the equator from 23.5 degrees north to 23.5 degrees south (from Nicaragua and Costa Rica to Southeastern Brazil and Bolivia) are known to be home to a hundred different species of Poison Arrow Frogs.
These regions scatter a number of tropical rainforests where trees grow as high as 60 feet and experience an average of 50 to 250 inches of rainfall yearly. In these rainforests, the temperature is fairly warm and humid, and the terrain is rocky, mossy and flowing with streams. These rainforests are known to be the natural habitat of the Poison Arrow Frogs.
A rainforest has different levels, and the Poison Arrow Frog usually stays on the forest floors where the area is usually completely shaded, receiving very little light due to their terrestrial nature. Being amphibians, they opt to stay near water sources such as ponds or streams where the soil is thin, dark and moist so they can easily breed and manage their body temperatures. Poison Arrow Frogs are cold blooded or Poikilothermic. This means they need to stay in an environment where the temperature is somewhat constant since their body temperature is affected by the temperature of their surroundings. It is said that if the temperature falls, they act lethargic and if it gets warm they become very active.
The forest floor also offers a lot to the Poison Arrow Frogs where there is an abundance of smaller insects such as termites, crickets and ants and a litter of organic substances that falls from the bark and leaves of the trees. They live mainly on the forest floor and will occupy a “territory” by either “sumo-fighting” other frogs or by making a distinct buzzing sound using their throat sacs. But they will come out into the forest canopy or about 5 meters up in the trees when mating with each other and breeding. They use the water-filled holes in the trunks of the trees or in water pools created by the large leaves of some jungle plants to deposit and fertilize their tadpoles.
The Poison Arrow Frogs are known to produce its toxicity from the diverse plants and insects that it feeds in when living in this type of pure and wild natural habitat. Most Poison Arrow Frogs that were bred in captivity were not able to obtain the same toxicity as those who were originally kept in their wild natural habitat.