Healthy frogs means healthy humans. Jean-Marc Hero, a vertebrate ecologist specializing in conservation biology of amphibians, biodiversity assessment and monitoring, and conservation physiology explains that the survival of the Earth depends on frogs. The survival of frogs depends on humans.
Today, there are more seven thousand species of amphibians in the world – more than six thousand of those species are frogs. With so many frogs, how can the survival of the planet depend on them? Well, in lots of ways.
Frogs clean up after us. Runoff from human activities causes algae blooms. This will be even more obvious this year because of the last few years of droughts has increased the amount of runoff from land with decreased vegetation. Tadpoles eat that algae and, as they grow and become frogs, return some of those nutrients to the land.
Frogs eat bugs. We’ve had a wet winter and spring (although we’re still not out of the drought) and the mosquitoes are plentiful. With mosquitoes comes many diseases. West Nile virus has already popped up this year. Frogs eat tons of insects each year.
Chemicals produced by frogs’ glands are used in medicines, such as antibiotic peptides, anti-tumor agents, analgesics, and adhesive compounds.
This TEDx talk goes into more detail about the good frogs do.
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