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2010-02-21 07:25:00

Australians have discovered a new weapon in the fight against the dreaded cane toad problem plaguing the country: cat food, reports the Associated Press. According to researchers from the University of Sydney, placing a few tablespoons of cat food next to ponds in the Northern Territory attracts ferocious meat ants. When the baby cane toads come to the surface of the water, the ants turn their attention to them and attack fiercely. The attempt to wipe out the cane toad from Australia has...

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2010-01-25 07:33:01

Midwife toads that live in the mountains are highly likely to die from a serious fungal infection, called chytridiomycosis, whereas their infected relatives in the lowlands are not, according to new research published Jan. 24 in Ecology Letters. The authors of the study, from Imperial College London, the Zoological Society of London and the BiodivERsA project RACE, say their findings suggest conservationists may be able to limit the impact of the disease in the mountains by ensuring tourists...

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2010-01-06 11:45:33

Scientists in Australia have found that the female cane toad will expand her body if she feels a male 'isn't her type.' According to their study, AFP reports, this suggests frogs and toads may have more power over choosing their mates than we thought. More details on the study appear in the British journal Biology Letters. The mating process is actually quite interesting. The female toad will choose whichever male gives out the best call. Sounds simple enough. However, she must fight off...

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2009-10-19 14:27:35

A workshop at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama has dramatically improved the ability of conservationists and regulatory agencies to monitor the spread of chytridiomycosis"”one of the deadliest frog diseases on Earth. Caused by the chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, this disease is probably responsible for the extinction of nearly 100 frog species since the 1970s. During the past decade, the epidemic swept from the highlands of Costa Rica through western...

2009-09-22 18:31:49

Texas wildlife officials have released 360 Houston toads born and raised in the Houston Zoo, hoping they can replenish the wild population. A total of 140 toads were delivered Monday evening to Bastrop State Park in Bastrop County east of Austin. The rest were released in suitable habitat in Austin County, west of Houston. At this point, it's triage, Michael Forstner, a Texas State University-San Marcos biologist, told The Austin American-Statesman. The population is still declining. The...

2009-08-17 16:30:00

The four-day testing period the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) commonly uses to determine safe levels of pesticide exposure for humans and animals could fail to account for the toxins' long-term effects, University of Pittsburgh researchers report in the September edition of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry.The team found that the highly toxic pesticide endosulfan"”a neurotoxin banned in several nations but still used extensively in U.S. agriculture"”can exhibit...

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2009-07-13 12:05:00

When it comes to mating, timing is everything for amphibians. Researchers have found that the mating activity of amphibians is synchronized by the full Moon. The fascinating fact that frogs, toads and newts across the globe seem to enjoy mating by moonlight has never before been noticed. It appears that in order to make sure that a sufficient number of males and females join up at the same time, they use the lunar cycle to co-ordinate their gatherings. This proves to be an ingenious...

2009-05-11 14:19:44

The online European Bombina Song Contest, which compares the songs of fire-bellied toads in European countries, was won by an amphibian choir in Sweden. Sweden's toads won 70 percent of the votes in the contest, beating out toads singing in their natural habitats in Lithuania, Germany and Denmark, Swedish news agency TT reported Monday. Claes Andren of the Nordens Ark wildlife preserve in Bohuslan, Sweden, where the toad songs were recorded, said the country's amphibians also won the previous...

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2009-03-30 07:35:00

Ecologists in Australia have discovered that cane toads are far more susceptible to being killed and eaten by meat ants than native frogs. Their research "“ published in the British Ecological Society's journal Functional Ecology "“ reveals a chink in the cane toad's armor that could help control the spread of this alien invasive species in tropical Australia. Professor Rick Shine and his colleagues Georgia Ward-Fear, Matt Greenlees and Greg Brown from the University of Sydney's...

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2008-12-02 14:15:57

Researchers believe a bad back might be the only thing that can stop the relentless spread of Australia's poisonous cane toads, which are killing native animals across the nation. So far, Australia's own army couldn't stop the army of nearly 200 million cane toads. Campaigns involving residents swinging golf clubs and a plan to freeze them to death in refrigerators have both failed to contain their numbers. But scientists in Australia now believe evolution has taken over, as the cane toads...


Latest Toads Reference Libraries

Western Toad, Anaxyrus Boreas
2014-08-29 10:52:14

The Western Toad, Anaxyrus boreas, or more commonly known as Bufo boreas, is a large toad species of western North America. It grows to between 5.6 and 13 centimeters long. It has a white or cream colored dorsal stripe, and is dusky gray or greenish dorsally with skin glands concentrated within the dark blotches. Its parotoid glands are oval shaped, widely separated, and larger than the upper eyelids. It features a mottled venter and horizontal pupils but it lacks cranial crests. Compared...

Costa Rican Variable Harlequin Toad, Atelopus Varius
2014-08-29 09:49:13

The Costa Rican Variable Harlequin Toad, Atelopus varius, known also as the clown frog, is a neo-tropical true toad belonging to the family Bufonidae. Ranging once from Costa Rica to Panama, A. varius is currently listed as critically endangered and has been decreased to a single remnant population near Quepos, Costa Rica and is assumed to be extinct within Panama. Some recent variation in the air temperature, precipitation, stream flow patterns, and the following spread of a pathogenic...

Mountain Harlequin Frog, Atelopus Certus
2014-08-05 09:43:02

Mountain Harlequin Frog, Atelopus Certus, is a species of toad belonging to the family Bufonidae. This toad is native to the Darien region of eastern Panama, and its type locality is Cerro Sapo, providing it with its common name, Mountain Harlequin Frog. Its natural habitats are tropical or subtropical moist lowland forests, tropical or subtropical moist montane forests, and rivers. This species is threatened mostly by the advancing wave of chytridiomycosis moving through Central...

Couch’s Spadefoot Toad, Scaphiopus Couchii
2014-08-05 09:20:52

The Couch’s Spadefoot Toad, Scaphiopus couchii, is a species of North American spade foot toad. The specific nickname couchii honors an American naturalist Darius Nash Couch, who gathered the first specimen while on a personal expedition to northern Mexico to collect mineral, plant, and animal specimens for the Smithsonian Institution. It is endemic to the southwestern United States, the Baja Peninsula, and northern Mexico. They can be found throughout the Sonoran Desert, which consists...

African Red Toad, Schismaderma Carens
2013-11-22 13:31:33

The African Red Toad, Schismaderma Carens, known also as the African Split-Skin Toad, is a species of toad belonging to the family Bufonidae. It’s monotypic within the genus Schismaderma. It is located in Angola, Botswana, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Malawi, Kenya, Mozambique, South Africa, Namibia, Swaziland, Zambia, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, and possibly Lesotho. The natural habitats are dry savanna, moist savanna, tropical or subtropical dry shrubland, tropical or subtropical moist...

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Word of the Day
out-herod
  • In the phrase to out-herod Herod, to be more violent than Herod (as represented in the old mystery plays); hence, to exceed in any excess of evil.
Herod refers to 'Herod the Great,' a Roman client king and 'a madman who murdered his own family and a great many rabbis.' According to the OED, the term is 'chiefly with allusion to Shakespeare's use' in Hamlet.
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