4000 species worldwide, 210 found in Australia.
Amphibians first appeared about 370 million years ago and there are 3 main groups, Newts and salamanders, caecilians, frogs and toads although out of the 3, frogs are the only amphibians to naturally occur in Australia with 210 of the worlds 4000 species.
Frogs are ectotherms relying on heat from the environment to keep warm and digest their food unlike humans who warm up in a metabolic process generated by the food we eat, therefore they don't have regular meals because their digestion is a much slower process than a endootherm. The most common frog species in Australia is the green tree frog and it was also the first frog to be reported by Joseph banks in 1790. The scientific name for the frog is Litora Caerulea, the word ''Caerulea'' indicates the frog is Caerulea blue...? blue? On the journey back to England the frog was preserved in alcohol which made the skin turn from green to blue and the name still sticks today. Green tree frogs have thrived from man made structures such as ablution blocks, showers, letter boxes, in fact they are found just about anywhere that will shelter them during the day.
Frog skin is a vital part of hydration, respiration, absorbing oxygen and releasing carbon dioxide as well as regulating the body's salt content. They keep the skin moist by producing a mucus from the glands in their skin and they most frogs can change colour slightly to blend in with their environment.
amphibians vs reptiles
Amphibians are quite often mistaken as reptiles but there are a few features that set them apart. Although reptiles and amphibians are both ectothermic when reptiles are born they are a mini version of an adult, as they grow up they do not develop were as frogs do, frogs start out in gelatinous eggs, once the eggs are laid the tadpoles will start to develop in the eggs, then eventually become free swimming tadpoles and their limbs will start developing until they are ready to leave the water for their final stage as a frog.
Cane toads in Australia
Cane toads have become a pest after being introduced in Australia to control destructive beetles in Queensland's sugar cane crops. The range of cane toads is expanding throughout Australia and moving westward rapidly at around 40 - 60 kms per year. Cane toads are a poisonous amphibian which they produce through glands on their skin shooting up like rocket launchers, some animals have learnt to avoid this but animals including snakes and crocodiles are not so lucky. When cane toads are ingested they contain poisons that act on the heart and central nervous system killing the animal rapidly.
poison vs venom
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