How many “chucks” could a Tungara frog chuck if a Tungara frog could chuck…“chucks?”


Tungara frog (Engystomops pustulosus)

Tungara frog (Engystomops pustulosus)

Cute Frog of the Week: August 23, 2010

Try that tongue twister on for size. But in the world of the tungara frog, “chucking” is no laughing matter. The more a male can “chuck,” the more attractive he is to potential mates. This unique call, made only by males, is a sound the ladies love, says the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama. But female tungaras aren’t the only ones that perk up to this unlikely siren song. Predators, such as the fringe-lipped bat, do, too. Could you imagine being hunted by a predator and a mate at the same time? Talk about a stressful predicament! But if they make it out alive, the male and female produce foam nests chock full of eggs that—protected from sunlight, disease and heat—will eventually hatch and carry on the “chucking” tune.

Photo credit: Brian Gratwicke, Panama Amphibian Rescue and Conservation Project.

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