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Frog Friday Parenting

Posted on Jan 23, 2015

Thank Goodness it’s Frog Friday again! Although every day is frog day in my book, I have to admit that I am particularly excited about next Frog Friday because I will be heading down to Panama again to expand our ongoing research on the endangered amphibians found in Cocobolo Nature Reserve. So many questions to answer… Why did some species survive the mass extinctions that ravaged other sites in Panama? How did selective decline of some species in the preserve affect the balance between surviving species? Are there ways to safely re-introduce some of the ex-situ backup populations that are now trapped in zoos and research institutions? And on top of all these practical conservation questions is the never-ending desire to learn more about these amazing animals – look at the incredible behavior displayed by this minute (3/4″) rocket frog! Their eggs are deposited in a damp spot on the forest floor – safe from fish and other aquatic predators – and guarded by the parents. When the eggs hatch, the father carries his tadpoles to a nearby stream where he releases them in a suitable puddle and they complete their development! Did you know that amphibians could be such caring parents?

Rocket frog tadpoles

Twan Leenders
RTPI President