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Nature & Environment

Hipster toad uses moustache as a weapon

By T.K. Randall
July 6, 2013 · Comment icon 16 comments

Image Credit: Wiki
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.[!gad]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. The males arrive first and claim rocks in the fast-flowing water. They spend several weeks swimming around their chosen rock, with hardly any food, grunting underwater to attract females.


Source: New Scientist | Comments (16)




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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #7 Posted by kannin 11 years ago
lmao thats just creepy
Comment icon #8 Posted by Lava_Lady 11 years ago
lmao thats just creepy LOL!!!
Comment icon #9 Posted by kannin 11 years ago
i love how you put weapon in the tags, imagine running around throwing moustached toads at people lol
Comment icon #10 Posted by Lava_Lady 11 years ago
i love how you put weapon in the tags, imagine running around throwing moustached toads at people lol lol that would be a new gang weapon!
Comment icon #11 Posted by AliveInDeath7 11 years ago
Poor badass toad, being called a hipster. He is too cool for that.
Comment icon #12 Posted by ancient astronaut 11 years ago
looks like something out of Pacific Rim.
Comment icon #13 Posted by Lava_Lady 11 years ago
looks like something out of Pacific Rim. It does! I can't wait to see the movie!
Comment icon #14 Posted by kannin 11 years ago
It does! I can't wait to see the movie! indeed
Comment icon #15 Posted by Sundew 11 years ago
This critter has a really unusual distribution: New York, California (Bay area), near London, England and in China if I read the article correctly. That's almost as unusual as the spikes.
Comment icon #16 Posted by Lava_Lady 11 years ago
This critter has a really unusual distribution: New York, California (Bay area), near London, England and in China if I read the article correctly. That's almost as unusual as the spikes. It really is unusual, such distance between distribution.... I guess that's just how badass this little guy is.


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