Exploding toads baffle German experts

BERLIN (AFP) - Hundreds of toads have met a bizarre and sinister end in Germany in recent days, it was reported: they exploded.

According to reports from animal welfare workers and veterinarians as many as a thousand of the amphibians have perished after their bodies swelled to bursting point and their entrails were propelled for up to a metre (three feet).

It is like "a science fiction film", according to Werner Smolnik of a nature protection society in the northern city of Hamburg, where the phenomenon of the exploding toad has been observed.

"You see the animals crawling on the ground, swelling and then exploding."

He said the bodies of the toads expanded to three and a half times their normal size.

"I have never seen such a thing," said veterinarian Otto Horst. So bad has the death toll been that the lake in the Altona district of Hamburg has been dubbed "the pond of death."

Access to it has been sealed off and every night a biologist visits it between 2:00 and 3:00 am, which appears to be peak time for batrachians to go bang.

Explanations include an unknown virus, a fungus that has infected the water, or crows, which in an echo of the Alfred Hitchcock movie "The Birds", attack the toads, literally scaring them to death.

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28 Responses:

  1. Oh, so that's how long a metre is.

  2. mooflyfoof says:

    what in god's name.

  3. xed_geek says:

    hahahhahhah, Video, must have video!
    Totally bizarre!

  4. I blame the Pope. It has to have something to do with the Pope.

  5. emagius says:

    Come on. This kind of stuff happens all the time in Resident Evil.

  6. pavel_lishin says:

    I explode when I get scared, too. They can control it with medication.

  7. joeradio says:

    The more appropriate movie reference would be The Reflecting Skin, which actually features exploding frogs. It's also where Coil got the samples for their track "Exploding Frogs" (off Stolen And Contaminated Songs).

  8. jope says:

    The work of the nefarious Baron Greenback, methinks.

  9. bokane says:

    Clearly someone's sewing their asses shut and feeding them Pop Rocks and Coke.

  10. endquote says:

    I dunno, I think the whale was cooler.

  11. LaRouche Toad-Frog Massacre?

  12. baconmonkey says:

    The Exploding Frog and Other Fables from Aesop

    Exploding frog batth buddies

    I was attacked by frogs once. Mercifully I prevailed but the battle was not pretty. I'll never forget the feeling of exploding frog guts squishing under the waistband of my shorts.

    it could just be George Bush, reliving childhood memories.
    ''We were terrible to animals,'' recalled Mr. Throckmorton, laughing. A dip behind the Bush home turned into a small lake after a good rain, and thousands of frogs would come out.

    ''Everybody would get BB guns and shoot them,'' Mr. Throckmorton said. ''Or we'd put firecrackers in the frogs and throw them and blow them up.''

  13. Cruel people at highschool did that to seagulls.

  14. j_v_lynch says:

    perhaps they should look for a way sell this to australia.