The Frogmouth and the Cane Toad.

To: Lloyd Nielsen <>
Subject: The Frogmouth and the Cane Toad.
From: Del Richards <>
Date: Mon, 31 Aug 2009 13:20:53 +1000
Recently a friend of mine in Kuranda was taking her usual morning walk and noticed a male Papuan Frogmouth lying on it's back on the kerbside. She was able to pick the bird up as it was in a state of paralysis at the time. Although she was not able to find any sign of superficial injury she delivered the frogmouth to a local wildlife carer. After some hours the bird regurgitated a cane toad and in due course was returned to it's home habitat after five days in care apparently unaffected by the ordeal.. Many of the species that fall victim to poisoning from Cane Toads as in the frogmouth's case have to swallow them whole and are not able to be discriminate as to which parts are safe to eat. Indeed there are quite a number of would be hunters such as raptors etc. which are equipped to take pieces that do not cary the toxins. ( It occurs to me that some species that are able to taste the poison and therefore avoid it. If indeed this is not a factor how else would the select species learn the art. They would invariably die first if it came down to a process of elimination.) As an outcome in this particular case it interesting that frogmouths are able to regurgitate this food item and this may because the birds have such a huge gape.

Del Richards, Fine Feather Tours, Mossman, NQ.

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