Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Cane toads cannibalise their young

Cane toads wiggle their toes to lure their young, then eat them up in an act of cannibalism, Australian researchers say. They say the young toads move towards the adults, possibly mistaking the wiggling toes for a tasty morsel, like an insect. Instead the youngsters themselves end up as the tasty morsel. But harnessing this cannibalistic behaviour may have some benefits, at least in Australia, where cane toads are an invasive pest. Scientists say it could be the key to getting cane toads to eat themselves out of existence.

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