From: Editor, Discovery News
Published December 9, 2010 10:41 AM

Frog Bladders Hold Surprises

Australia's desert frogs are famously able to store up large amounts of water in their bladder to last them through the drought. But now researchers from Charles Darwin University in the Northern Territory have found that frog bladders can hold another, even more bizarre surprise.


Chris Tracy and colleagues report in the Royal Society journal Biology Letters that frogs have a unique way of dealing with foreign objects that become lodged in their bodies: They store and even expel them from the bladder.

After finding that frogs implanted with radio transmitters in the field became mysteriously separated from the devices, the researchers implanted small beads into the body cavities of tree frogs and cane toads to see what would happen.

Within nine days, all the tree frogs had expelled the beads completely from the body via their bladder, while the beads in the cane toads had migrated to the bladder and stayed there.

"The bladder of frogs appears to be a unique pathway of expulsion of foreign objects from the body," says Tracy.

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