JUL 06, 2017 9:11 AM PDT

Here's What Causes Abnormal Leg Count in Frogs

WRITTEN BY: Anthony Bouchard


Normally, frogs develop from tadpoles with just two hind legs. But there are unique circumstances in which they can develop anywhere from 0-10 legs.

It can occur from bird defects, but it usually happens when the tadpole becomes infected with a specific kind of parasite. After the parasite has made its home inside of the tadpole host, it invades the leg buds of the tadpole and develops into a cyst, which gets in the way of the buds eventually growing into legs.

As a result, the tadpole's body gets confused and begins growing legs sporadically. In some instances, legs don't grow at all, but in many others, more than 2 appear.

The legs stay with the tadpole throughout its life, including when it develops into a full-sized frog. This makes the frog less adept at getting around, making it easier for the parasite to spread to new hosts when the frog eventually gets eaten by birds.

About the Author
  • Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
You May Also Like
APR 27, 2020
Space & Astronomy
Hubble Snaps Gorgeous Photo for 30th Anniversary
APR 27, 2020
Hubble Snaps Gorgeous Photo for 30th Anniversary
The Hubble Space Telescope surpassed its 30th year in space on Friday, April 24th. Being that it’s one of the most ...
MAY 17, 2020
Plants & Animals
Male Garter Snakes Trick Others to Improve Own Mating Success
MAY 17, 2020
Male Garter Snakes Trick Others to Improve Own Mating Success
After spending several months in hibernation during the winter, male garter snakes emerge from the underground where the ...
JUN 16, 2020
Earth & The Environment
How do Microplastics Reach the Deep Seafloor?
JUN 16, 2020
How do Microplastics Reach the Deep Seafloor?
Plastics and microplastics are certainly not recent developments in ocean pollution. However, scientists continue to inv ...
JUN 26, 2020
Space & Astronomy
Astrophysicists Find Evidence of Nearby Planet that May Sustain Life
JUN 26, 2020
Astrophysicists Find Evidence of Nearby Planet that May Sustain Life
Researchers have found that a nearby red dwarf star, known as Gliese 887, may host three planets, one of which could sus ...
JUN 30, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
Axion: Could the Curious Particle "Kill Two Birds with One Stone"
JUN 30, 2020
Axion: Could the Curious Particle "Kill Two Birds with One Stone"
Physicists often ponder in an unusual way: they use one unsolved problem as a hypothetic solution to another, hoping to ...
JUL 08, 2020
Neuroscience
Maternal Instinct Overrides Brain's Decision Making
JUL 08, 2020
Maternal Instinct Overrides Brain's Decision Making
Researchers have found that the maternal instinct can override the brain's decision-making regions to prioritize car ...
Loading Comments...