Navigation Links
Tree frogs speed up their life cycle when becoming lunch

Think again if you've always believed that events in the life cycle of animals happen consistently, almost rigidly, as part of the natural rhythm of nature. Studies by Sinlan Poo and David Bickford of the National University of Singapore, Singapore, show that Mother Nature is much more flexible than you might think. In a paper in Springer's journal Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology, the researchers describe how Hansen's tree frog (Chiromantis hansenae) speeds up its life cycle to hatch earlier once its eggs are preyed upon.

Hansen's tree frog is found in Thailand and parts of Cambodia. In the rainy season, gelatinous masses of its eggs can be seen on plants overhanging seasonal pools. Moments before they are due to hatch, the entire clutch detaches from the plant to drop into the water below. The hatchlings then almost immediately emerge from the gelatinous mass in which they developed. This whole process sounds easier than it actually is, because a type of katydid (Hexacentrus cf. unicolor) frequents these pools and is known to eat both adult frogs, and their eggs.

The study was conducted at an open air laboratory at the Sakaerat Environmental Research Station in Thailand, where the frogs were kept in glass aquariums and the researchers used a time-lapse camera to capture the results of their experiments on 70 clutches. In the process, Poo and Bickford were able to document environmentally cued hatching among Southeast Asian amphibians, and for the frog family Rhacophoridae, for the first time.

Hatching occurred much sooner among clutches of newly laid eggs from which Poo and Bickford removed a section, than among undisturbed clutches. In turn, when katydids fed on older embryos of four days old, leftover eggs tended to hatch within an hour after the incident. In fact, older embryos that escaped becoming katydid lunch hatched one fifth sooner than those of undisturbed clutches.

The speeding up of hatching time is clearly a reaction to the eggs' being preyed upon. It is possibly triggered by chemical cues that are released once embryos are broken, or when the clutch structure as a whole is damaged. The researchers also established that early hatching in this case was not correlated with the size of the female frog that laid the eggs or the amount of time she spends watching over them.

"Both young and old Hansen's tree frog embryos are able to hatch earlier when disturbed," says Poo.

"Hatching is a plastic or flexible event in the life cycle of this frog, because its embryos are able to respond to acute signals, such as predation, by escaping into the next life-stage," explains Bickford, who suggests that this ability gives the frog an adaptive advantage.

Contact: Alexander K. Brown
Springer Science+Business Media

Related biology news :

1. Athletic frogs have faster-changing genomes
2. Richer parasite diversity leads to healthier frogs, says University of Colorado study
3. Preserved frogs hold clues to deadly pathogen
4. Genetic matchmaking saves endangered frogs
5. What do American bullfrogs eat when theyre away from home? Practically everything!
6. New scientific studies reveal Midwestern frogs decline, mammal populations altered by invasive plant
7. Croaking chorus of Cuban frogs make noisy new neighbors
8. Threatened frogs palmed off as forests disappear
9. Bullfrogs may help spread deadly amphibian fungus, but also die from it
10. Pesticides contaminate frogs from Californian National Parks
11. Female frogs prefer males who can multitask
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Tree frogs speed up their life cycle when becoming lunch
(Date:10/29/2015)...  Connected health pioneer, Joseph C. Kvedar , ... health and wellness, and the business opportunities that arise ... Internet of Healthy Things . Long before health ... Dr. Kvedar, vice president, Connected Health, Partners HealthCare, was ... care from the hospital or doctor,s office into the ...
(Date:10/27/2015)... 2015 Synaptics Inc. (NASDAQ: SYNA ), the ... has adopted the Synaptics ® ClearPad ® ... its newest flagship smartphones, the Nexus 5X by LG ... --> --> Synaptics works closely ... collaboration in the joint development of next generation technologies. ...
(Date:10/23/2015)... GOLETA, California , October 23, 2015 /PRNewswire/ ... SensoMotoric Instruments (SMI) announce a mobile plug and play ... during interactive real-world tasks SensoMotoric Instruments (SMI) ... their established wearable solutions for eye tracking and physiological ... captured with SMI Eye Tracking Glasses 2w ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/25/2015)... 2015 2 nouvelles études permettent d ... les différences entre les souches bactériennes retrouvées dans la plaque ... êtres humains . Ces recherches  ouvrent une nouvelle ... en charge efficace de l,un des problèmes de ... .    --> 2 nouvelles études permettent ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... IN (PRWEB) , ... November 25, 2015 , ... ... (AMA) and the Organization of Black Aerospace Professionals (OPBAP) has been formalized with ... and other AMA team leaders met with OPBAP leaders Capt. Karl Minter and ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... 2015 , ... The United States Golf Association (USGA) today announced Dr. Bruce ... Presented annually since 1961, the USGA Green Section Award recognizes an individual’s distinguished service ... , Clarke, of Iselin, N.J., is an extension specialist of turfgrass pathology in the ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 24, 2015 , ... ... year and one of the premier annual events for pharmaceutical manufacturing: 2015 Annual ... November 2015, where ISPE hosted the largest number of attendees in more than ...
Breaking Biology Technology: