Especially male poison frogs piggyback their offspring to pools in the rainforest. Now, researchers from Vetmeduni Vienna, the University of Vienna and Harvard University showed that this parental behavior can be triggered experimentally. With unrelated tadpoles placed on their backs, male -- and even female -- 'foster parents' behave as if they had picked up the tadpoles themselves. This showed for the first time that an external stimulus triggers complex behaviors in amphibians. Journal of Experimental Biology.
Scientists say that a large, now extinct, frog called Beelzebufo that lived about 68 million years ago in Madagascar would have been capable of eating small dinosaurs. The conclusion comes from a study of the bite force of South American horned frogs from the living genus Ceratophrys, known as Pacman frogs for their characteristic round shape and large mouth, similar to the video game character Pac-Man.
new study of the world's seven sea turtle species provides evidence that their numbers are growing overall (unlike many endangered vertebrates), thanks to years of conservation efforts that have played a key role in sea turtle recovery -- even for small sea turtle populations.
A new Biological Reviews study provides a comprehensive assessment of how changes to wetlands affect animals, and the authors use their findings to provide recommendations for managing wetlands to maximise their biodiversity.
New research indicates that fish may adapt their behavior to defend against parasite infection. The findings are published in the Journal of Zoology.
Some of nature's most vibrant colors occur in frogs, who peek out from rainforests and marshes in startling shades of blue, yellow and red. But for hundreds of species, only males flaunt flashy colors -- and sometimes only for a few hours, days or weeks each year. Scientists report that the males of at least 178 species of frogs undergo a temporary color change during their breeding season. Their research will help them understand why.
A new hermit crab species can live in a walking coral's cavity in a reciprocal relationship, replacing the usual marine worm partner, according to a study published Sept. 20, 2017, in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Momoko Igawa and Makoto Kato from Kyoto University, Japan.
In 2003, Northern California's Yurok Tribe initiated efforts to reintroduce California condors on their lands. While wild condors have not existed in the region for more than a hundred years, a new study from The Condor: Ornithological Applications suggests that hunters transitioning from lead to non-lead ammunition may allow these apex scavengers to succeed there once again.
Most birds lack genitalia, but male ducks are known for their long, spiraling penises, which have evolved through an ongoing cat-and-mouse game with females. A new study looks at whether these impressive organs are affected by the social environment -- that is, whether male ducks that face more competition grow bigger penises. While this appears to be true for some species, in others the relationship between social environment and penis growth is more complex.
A deadly amphibian disease called severe Perkinsea infections, or SPI, is the cause of many large-scale frog die-offs in the United States, according to a new study by the US Geological Survey.