There's Big Money in the Secret Art of Frog Farming

Make money frog farming. Raising frogs is easier than you think, demands are high for this low-maintenance crop and the pay-out is lucrative.


| July/August 1978



Older tadpoles go from incubator to holding pond in frog farming. During their 4 to 5 months in the holding pool, the tads change to frogs. The male bullfrog has larger eardrum "circle" that his mate. A fish net comes in handy for filling big orders.

Older tadpoles go from incubator to holding pond in frog farming. During their 4 to 5 months in the holding pool, the tads change to frogs. The male bullfrog has larger eardrum "circle" that his mate. A fish net comes in handy for filling big orders.


Photo by Fotolia/ronniechua

Learn about frog farming. Demands exceeds supply for this unusual, low-maintenance crop.

The Secret Art of Frog Farming

Most business-minded farmers can figure on making about $69 gross income on an acre of wheat . . . approximately $160 from the same amount of corn.. . and around $175 with an acre of soybeans. Then there's Leonard Slabaugh, a Missouri farmer with a completely different approach. For Leonard swears that his highly unusual crop — Live Bullfrogs — returns a full $10,000 profit . . . per acre . . . and requires only one hour of his time each day!

"Why, I can harvest 6,000 frogs a year on this two-acre farm . . . and I realize anywhere from $2.50 a pound to $25 per frog!" Leonard Slabaugh — against a background of grunts and croaks — was telling me his success story with as much enthusiasm as a gold prospector who's suddenly struck it rich. "Yep, you can make big money with these little rascals. Come on out to the breeder pond and I'll tell you all about it."

Frogs Plop, Plop, Plop

As we walked up to the mini-lake, I saw hundreds of startled giant bullfrogs jump into the water. Then, half a minute later, pairs of marble-sized eyes began peeping above the surface of the pond like submarine periscopes searching for the enemy.

True bullfrogs (Rana catesbiana) — the webfooted livestock that Slabaugh specializes in — are not difficult to identify since they're the largest frog native to the continental United States. Although their natural habitat centers around the woodland lakes and ponds of the eastern and southern U.S., these profitable amphibians have been known to thrive in cultivated waters as far west as the Pacific coast and as far north as southern Canada.

Frog Selling Markets

"The demand is greater than the supply . . . it always has been," Leonard Slabaugh continued. "I sell all that I can produce and still have people backed up on waiting lists: Supermarket chains and wholesale outlets buy 'em in enormous quantities. Big restaurants want 'em shipped out on ice. People come by here and pick'em up by the buckets full. High schools and colleges need bullfrogs for their biology classes, and laboratories use 'em for medical experiments. Why, the market is growing continuously all the time."

cesar
7/8/2015 11:59:41 AM

Is this article really from 1978? Are there any new developments in this subject?


tom_1
11/17/2007 6:21:46 PM

Very cool article. I am looking at my very wide and long backyard in a different way. If only the neighbors would all go deaf. As it is, I couldn't raise earthworms without someone complaining of the sound of earthworm digestion. Thanx! Great Article!






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