'Alien scene' of tadpoles' feast
August 11, 2009 10:43 PM   Subscribe

"Mountain chickens have very peculiar breeding habits" "Alien-like" scenes of tadpoles feasting on eggs emerging from their mother have been caught on camera. The footage marks the success of a captive breeding programme for the critically endangered mountain chicken frog, one of the world's largest frogs. (BBC) Not for the easily squicked.
posted by longsleeves (31 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Seriously, who among us hasn't eaten eggs as they came out of a Mountain Chicken Frog?
posted by allen.spaulding at 10:46 PM on August 11, 2009 [3 favorites]

I read the article before watching the video, so my brain was able to automatically generate an accurate David Attenborough voiceover.
posted by Jon_Evil at 10:50 PM on August 11, 2009

Not for the easily squicked.

Sweet Mother Mary on a grilled cheese sandwich, I never thought tadpoles could be that creepy, but this is one of those things I will never been able to un-see, no matter how hard I scrub. David Lynch is probably all over this one.
posted by Diagonalize at 10:52 PM on August 11, 2009

Waiter, I ordered scrambled eggs, not a scramble for eggs.
posted by Abiezer at 11:04 PM on August 11, 2009

"How bad could it be," I thought. And it was pretty yuck, but OK, not too revolted. Then the little white eggs made their appearance, and partial disappearance.
posted by WPW at 11:45 PM on August 11, 2009

"The frog is so called because its meat tastes like chicken. "

Wow. Never heard of such craziness before!
posted by sourwookie at 12:02 AM on August 12, 2009 [2 favorites]

Ah, delicious eggs! Just like mom used to menstruate.

sorry everyone
posted by hifiparasol at 12:02 AM on August 12, 2009 [6 favorites]

Tadpoles vs. Sewer Beast, who would win?
posted by Artw at 12:08 AM on August 12, 2009

o.m.g....you can see the eggs inside them...
oh thats not right.
posted by sexyrobot at 12:31 AM on August 12, 2009

He ain't heavy, he's my brother dinner.
posted by paulsc at 12:35 AM on August 12, 2009 [2 favorites]

Start your stoves
posted by adamvasco at 12:54 AM on August 12, 2009

Awww, they're so cute.
posted by Hastur at 1:48 AM on August 12, 2009 [1 favorite]

That's it? THAT'S IT?!

Damn, what a letdown.

Since childhood, I've hoped to one day see tadpoles sucking the eggs out of a frog. Only in my Giger/Eschler-esque fantasy, the consumed eggs viewable inside the tadpoles contained little tadpoles with razor sharp teeth, all of 'em ferociously chewing through the egg sac in a race for freedom...and the taste of eggs hatching from the bigger tadpoles...

Trust me, you don't want to know how deep the mountain chicken-hole goes.
posted by prinado at 2:00 AM on August 12, 2009 [2 favorites]

At least the eggs being eaten are infertile
posted by crayz at 3:21 AM on August 12, 2009

Everyone who complains about breastfeeding in public should be sent this article.
posted by PontifexPrimus at 4:55 AM on August 12, 2009 [6 favorites]

I was only seven years old when the first mountain chicken frogs came for mama. At first I thought it was funny, the way they squirmed and skittered across the filthy linoleum like they were pets. Part of me wanted to reach down and give them a bite of my Twinkie.

But then they piled upon her, one after the other, and all we could do was watch in horror. Daddy reached for the shotgun, but we all knew that was stupid, even before Jake knocked it out of his hand. What was there to shoot at? How would you hit them without hitting her?

It ended nearly as quickly as it started, but before the screaming stopped Granny had corralled all of us kids into the downstairs and latched the door. She tucked us all into the cool corner of the room and gave us Ale 8-1s from the downstairs fridge.

I remember sitting in that corner, drinking sips of soda through my sobs, watching Granny take the big rusty wrench to all of grandpas vials and flasks test tubes and Bunsen burners.
posted by jbickers at 4:59 AM on August 12, 2009 [4 favorites]

And that, my dear little tadpoles, is how you get herps.
posted by Cold Lurkey at 5:46 AM on August 12, 2009 [4 favorites]

How amazingly practical. Why, next thing you know, they'll evolve a seprate set of glands that excrete something nourishing for the young. Yet, who can say? Maybe it's more economical to just use the equipment that's already there.

I don't get what's supposed to be squicky about this. Frogs and eggs? I eat them both, although the eggs are fish or chicken eggs, not frog eggs.
posted by Goofyy at 5:54 AM on August 12, 2009

Thanks for posting this. Nothing like horrifying your coworkers first thing in the morning!
posted by PunkSoTawny at 6:09 AM on August 12, 2009

That was cool. My favorite bit is the part where you can see the eggs in their little translucent tummies. Then again, I like frogs, and fer gosh sake I do love seeing examples of maternal behavior in animals we humans often disregard as incapable of such complex displays of caring. From such humble beginnings came all of us, y'know...
posted by caution live frogs at 6:53 AM on August 12, 2009

such complex displays of caring

I'm not so sure it's complex displays of caring so much as instinctive behaviour. If this were true, the large swipe of the rear leg that it occasionally takes half of them out with probably would be done with a little more care.
posted by jimmythefish at 7:07 AM on August 12, 2009

Start your stoves
posted by adamvasco at 3:54 AM on August 12 [+] [!]

mmmm... can't wait to try some Turduckenfrog.
posted by Kabanos at 7:34 AM on August 12, 2009

I don't have audio. Did it explain why they're sitting in whipped cream?
posted by dirigibleman at 8:00 AM on August 12, 2009

Paging Gary Larson....
posted by nosila at 8:02 AM on August 12, 2009

Hmmm.. I've actually ate Mountain Chicken frogs - we called them 'crapaud' - on the island of Grenada in the West Indies about twenty years ago, before fungi started making them endangered. They were a very common country food. And they were quite good, so I can assume that the eggs must be good as well.

When you drove down country roads in the West Indies you would sometimes surprise Mountain Chicken frogs who would bask in the warm roadway at night. They would jump up and run on their hind legs down the road, towards the car, anywhere, with their huge webbed front feet waving in the air above their heads. These things stood at least two feet tall, so until you got used to it it looked like crazed green space aliens running around in your headlights.
posted by zaelic at 8:33 AM on August 12, 2009 [3 favorites]

Great story, zaelic. Them are some big tadpoles.
posted by Mister_A at 9:19 AM on August 12, 2009

Alien-like? I just saw greasy-Hungry-Hungry-Hippos-like. Maybe if the eggs didn't look so much like white marbles or ping-pong balls...
posted by FatherDagon at 9:21 AM on August 12, 2009

That video is right out of Lovecraft. I mean seriously that closeup could be Shub-Niggurath.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 9:47 AM on August 12, 2009 [1 favorite]

Good lord.
posted by widdershins at 10:31 AM on August 12, 2009

I am absolutely baffled as to what could be scary or gross about this. It's just tadpoles eating mountain chicken nuggets. They're kinda cute.
posted by notashroom at 12:14 PM on August 12, 2009

They are wasted if we don’t eat them . .

The eating part can even seem sensible, under certain conditions. That foam "nest," however, is better left unexamined by anyone with a sense of decorum.
posted by StickyCarpet at 12:56 PM on August 12, 2009

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