A remarkable species of toad has developed a rather unusual feature for combat and defense.
The Emei moustache toad is a hipster in its own right. The males are much larger than the females because unlike most amphibians, males of the species have a tendency to fight one another. When breeding season arrives the males will pick a position in a forest stream from which to attract a mate, but if competition ensues then they have a special weapon to help them win the day.
Bizarrely, the male toads sport a rather fetching moustache comprised of multiple sharp spikes that they are able to use to either attack other toads or defend themselves from predators. The larger and stronger the individual toad, the more likely it is to win out in a fight and the more likely it is to attract a mate. While the toads tend not to kill one another with their spikey moustaches they do cause some damage and toads with multiple puncture holes are not uncommon during this time of year.
"The toads spend most of the year in forests, but in February and March they head to streams to breed."
View: Full article
Source: New Scientist
Discuss: View comments (16)