Re: NANFA--News- Mysterious Frog Eggs

Jeffrey Fullerton (
Fri, 03 Oct 2003 03:04:04 -0400

Sajjad & others

That seems almost hard to believe that the eggs could have traveled so
far- unless some mechanism I'm not familar with. I've heard lots of
stories about things like fish and frogs falling from the sky- usually
associated with short distance transports by tornadoes. I've also read
some woo woo potboilers that were vogue back in the 1970s about critters
and disease organisms arriving from other universes via temporary
spatial portals (something to do with the Burmuda Triangle) or from the
tails of comets!

Lately new data on organic molecules in interstellar clouds and the
possibility of microbes being splashed off Mars by meteor strikes and
surviving transport to Earth have given new credence to the panspermia
theory - that life here could have started somewhere else.

Back to topic- I've heard of hurricanes transporting more typically
airborne things like seeds, insects and birds way north of their normal
ranges- that's probably why South Florida shares alot of same orchids
and bromeliads and tropical ferns as Central America and the West
Indies. In warmer years Spanish Moss has been found temporarily
established on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Tropical birds sometimes
get blown off course and end up in New England and maybe even Old
England as well- but frogs and frog eggs are something new. But if it
happened now- it probably has happened in the past and that might even
be a natural dispersal mechanism for some amphibians that are prone to
extend their ranges northward on the coastal plain- and could also carry
them across saltwater barriers to colonize islands.
In that case I don't know if you can call them exotic since they are
probably species indigenous to this landmass- even if their range is 300
or so miles to the south. If the climate is warming due to man made
changes or just natural rebound from the last Ice Age or an increase in
the solar constant- then colonization may be successful and not
necessarily a bad thing- since the final retreat of the Wisconsin
glacier the climate has undergone several major epochs of alternating
warmth and cold. Ranges of many species have also fluxed- advancing and
retreating just like glaciers do.
This just might be the discovery of a mechanism that frogs may use
unwittingly to disperse themselves.

I wouldn't mind if a hurricane crossing over Mexico picked up some of
those beautiful arboreal alligator lizards or Guerrero Wood Turtles and
dropped them unharmed on my doorstep!


Addendum- Busy day covering late blooming flowers and bringing in tender
tropicals- and repotting some neat palms I got from a nursery in Texas-
Brahea mooreii - a small fan type and a Chamaedores radicalis- a
feather/Parlor Palm type- both from the temperate forests of NE Mexico
and somewhat cold tollerant- down to about 15 deg for Brahea and low 20s
for the other- strategy on my part to ensure that at least something
green and tropical looking will survive a freeze out in the event of a
heater failure. The area they come from is in the uplands of Tamaulipas
which gets an occassional cold blast in the winter and it harbors alot
of interesting temperate and subtropical plants with great horticultural
Now I'm wondering if there are any tank or pond worthy fishes from that
area that would also be somewhat cold tollerant- like able to handle 50
degree water for several months of the year? I would guess that some of
the streams there might be pretty cool- even in the summer.
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