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Toxic toads 'threaten disaster'

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posted on Feb, 16 2006 @ 12:04 PM
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Toxic toads 'threaten disaster'

The toxic cane toad in Australia is evolving into an "eco-nightmare" capable of covering huge distances, a study in the journal Nature reports.

Scientists say the species Bufo marinus is developing a leggier, faster-moving form that is now hopping out rapidly across the continent.

The toads were introduced 70 years ago to control pests, but have since wrought havoc on indigenous animals.

They kill snakes, lizards, water birds - even crocodiles and dingos.

When harassed they secrete poison carried in two sacs behind the head which is lethal to a potential predator within minutes of being ingested.



What a disaster! You should note that even today there is discussion of how to introduce non-native species to control other non-native species...

Does anybody think that still makes sense?




posted on Feb, 16 2006 @ 12:12 PM
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Well it's a bit too late now, it makes an interesting experiment into Evolution though. For instance remember the fuss about the Zebra Mussel? Well apparently they've found their niche in the great lakes and have actually caused a very steep decline in the amount of toxic pollutants in the water. No I have no source for this, it was in my Biology textbook and I don't feel like copying it vertim right at the moment.

I'll copy a small exerpt from my textbook though.



The mussels not only reduced the amount of algae in the Great Lakes but they also removed pollutants from the water. Each adult mussel draws in as much water as 1.5L per day, retaining the pollutants and expelling the water. So much water is filtered that Lake Erie is now 60% cleaner then it was before the arrival of the Mussel.


I agree that we should avoid introducing new species into alien ecosystems but I think in this case we should just let Nature take it's course. Who knows it may even prove alot of what Evolutionists have been saying for over a Century now.

My question is will this trigger a response in the native species to start rapidly mutating to deal with the threat?

[edit on 16-2-2006 by sardion2000]



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