Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Frog Reproduction in the Tropics



Orange-thighed Frogs (Litoria xanthomera) in a...Image via WikipediaI did mention last week that I was going to make this blog about Costa Rican history this week but I guess we will save that for next week. Today I have an interesting topic for you. When you think of rainforest and Costa Rica one of the things that comes to your mind is Toucans, Volcanoes, Jaguars, Waterfalls, & FROGS!!!

Todays topic I wanted to talk a little bit about the frogs of Costa Rica and most importantly about the difference in the reproduction habits of the Leaf frog and the poisonous dart frog.

In Costa Rica we think of the Leaf Frogs which are the frogs that come out at night and are not poisonous. When it is time for these frogs to reproduce they go through a process that is called amplexus which is actually done through the armpits (look at the picture above that is two leaf frogs in in the process of amplexus which is fertilizing the eggs through the armpits) which is quite interesting.

The poisonous dart frog is completely absent of the amplexus process meaning that there is no physical contact during the fertilization of the eggs. For the poisonous dart frog it can be considered quite the boring process of reproduction. He has to go find the eggs that are floating around in water somewhere and then fertilize them without any physical contact while he then gets to here his Leaf Frog buddy talk about how fun his night was.
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