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Frogs

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MatC
315740.  Mon Apr 14, 2008 6:29 am Reply with quote

When you hear a frog in the background of a Hollywood film, you are almost certainly hearing the Pacific Tree Frog - because it’s the only American species which produces the archetypal “ribbit” sound. No matter where the film is set, no matter how out-of-place the sound might be, “ever since the days of the first talking pictures” film-makers have used the Pacific Tree Frog’s voice.

S: “Frogs” by David Badger (Voyageur Press, 1995).

Links: Films, Fakes

 
MatC
315758.  Mon Apr 14, 2008 6:39 am Reply with quote

Flash wrote:

Q: Where do frogs live?
Forfeit: Ponds

Any thoughts from anyone? I fear I may be over-simplifying.


It’s so easy, when researching anything, to forget or relegate personal experience, isn't it? I only remembered yesterday that in a small shrubbery-cum-flowerbed in my back garden I have a small metal dish sunk in the ground and full of water; it’s maybe 3-4 inches deep, and maybe 9” across. Throughout the summer (roughly from April to October, I’d say) at least one and more often two frogs are, in the daylight hours, permanently to be found in it. They emerge from it at dusk to (presumably) hunt.

I would have to say, if pressed, that they “live” in that water.

(I’ve got photos taken yesterday, but am not sure how, or if it’s possible, to upload).

 
MatC
315799.  Mon Apr 14, 2008 7:07 am Reply with quote

Frogs were “the first land animals with vocal cords,” and therefore can be said (according to one naturalist) to have “fathered all of the vertebrate music on earth.”

Why do some animals (such as frogs, birds, insects, bats) put so much effort into producing these sounds? It is hypothesised that animals which jump or fly make mating and territorial sounds because they leave “no continuous trail to be followed by chemosensory means.”

Apparently, the song of the American toad is similar to the opening movement of Beethoven’s ‘Moonlight Sonata.’ The Colorado River Toad’s call resembles a ferryboat whistle. Various other species sound like pigs, “barnyard livestock,” two carpenters banging in nails out of synch with each other, hounds barking, birds, sheep, bulls, crickets, and squirrels. The distress call of the bullfrog is often mistaken for a human scream.

Green Tree Frogs respond to sounds other than Green Tree Frog calls; one individual was noted calling at “the sounds of a washing machine, a popcorn popper, a dog lapping water, a car alarm, cannon fire in a Civil War movie, and Scott Joplin ragtime music.”

S: “Frogs” by David Badger (Voyageur Press, 1995).

Links: Lyrebird.

 
MatC
315812.  Mon Apr 14, 2008 7:37 am Reply with quote

Quote:
Few animals eat toads, because of their poison, but a snake (Rhabdophis tigrinus) on a Japanese island has not merely learned to eat the toad and survive the toxin; itself non-venomous, the snake actually stores the toad’s poison and uses it itself.



Link: to venomous/poison snakes/spiders

 
MatC
315813.  Mon Apr 14, 2008 7:40 am Reply with quote

Quote:
Sometimes, in the heat of the moment, male toads end up humping other males. The male underneath gives a harsh, high-pitched croak of protest, repeatedly, until the one on top gets off. This is the most commonly heard of all toad calls, which tells you something.



The male underneath will also signal his discomfort through the use of “release vibrations”.

S: “Frogs” by David Badger (Voyageur Press, 1995).

 
suze
315831.  Mon Apr 14, 2008 8:13 am Reply with quote

MatC wrote:
Link: to venomous/poison snakes/spiders


Oh yes! Linked to all those topics at post 287604.

 
Flash
315944.  Mon Apr 14, 2008 10:57 am Reply with quote

Gray sends this:
Quote:
The South African rain frog literally glues itself to the female's back to stop other males from mating. He exudes a kind of glue from his stomach that literally cements him to the female's back after mating, to ensure that no other males can get in there until he's successfully fertilised her.
It's also been discovered recently that the Australian Notaden burrowing frog secretes a stick glue with which it protects its skin from biting insects while buried in the dry season. The glue sticks up the biting jaws of the insects and traps them, and the frog then sheds its skin later and eats it, proteinous insect corpses and all. Mmm.
Anyway, this glue is ridiculously powerful and flexible, and orthopaedic surgeons are using it to stick knee joints back together.
http://www.arkive.org/media/0E644469-FC40-466D-927F-E8434335C368/Presentation.Medium/photo.jpg
S: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/3726796.stm
S: Life in Cold Blood, David Attenborough

 
MatC
315970.  Mon Apr 14, 2008 11:29 am Reply with quote

and ...

It is “almost impossible” to physically separate a pair of mating toads, so solid is their embrace.

S: “Frogs” by David Badger (Voyageur Press, 1995).

 
Flash
315971.  Mon Apr 14, 2008 11:34 am Reply with quote

Cue "how do you separate the men from the boys in the navy?" gag.

 
MatC
316033.  Mon Apr 14, 2008 2:33 pm Reply with quote

Quote:
It is “almost impossible” to physically separate a pair of mating toads, so solid is their embrace.



Which rather suggets that some rotter has actually tried, doesn't it?

 
MatC
316352.  Tue Apr 15, 2008 4:27 am Reply with quote

Some frogs are known as “foam nesters”. This includes the African Grey Tree Frog, the Japanese and Chinese Gliding Frogs, and the Mexican White-Lipped Frog (do any frogs have dull names?).

These species, instead of laying their eggs in the water, deposit them in frothy nests suspended over, or floating on, the water.

Whipped up by frenzied kicking of a fluid secreted by the female, the foam hardens like a meringue [...] it remains in place, or dissolves gradually, until the tadpoles hatch and fall into the water.


S: “Frogs” by David Badger (Voyageur Press, 1995).

 
MatC
316359.  Tue Apr 15, 2008 4:59 am Reply with quote

The female Gastric Brooding Frog would swallow her eggs and carry them in her stomach, subsequently spitting out the fully developed froglets.

The Gastric Brooding Frog is now thought to be extinct.

S: “Frogs” by David Badger (Voyageur Press, 1995).

 
Flash
316363.  Tue Apr 15, 2008 5:12 am Reply with quote

... which is hardly surprising.

 
MatC
316396.  Tue Apr 15, 2008 6:10 am Reply with quote

The tadpoles of the South American Paradoxical Frog (as far as I can tell, this book was not secretly written by Douglas Adams) are larger than the resulting frog. The tadpoles are 10 inches long; the adults just three inches.

“Tadpole,” by the way, means “toad head” - tad as in toad and poll as in poll tax. Until the 16th century, it was thought there were two kinds of tadpole: those which came from “seed,” and those which spontaneously “emerged from dust after summer showers or fell from the sky.”

S: “Frogs” by David Badger (Voyageur Press, 1995).

 
MatC
316421.  Tue Apr 15, 2008 6:37 am Reply with quote

The word “toady” (meaning a sycophant) derives from toadeater, which was the name given to a quack doctor’s assistant whose job it was to eat “poisonous” toads in order to demonstrate the efficacy of his master’s medicines.

S: “Frogs” by David Badger (Voyageur Press, 1995).

Link: Snake oil salesman.

 

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