Hot off the press! Toads at the invasion front are more prone to explore and take risks

By Jodie Gruber

The cane toad (Rhinella marina) has been spreading rapidly across northern Australia since its introduction to control sugar cane beetles in 1935. While toads have been the focus of considerable research, we still have a poor understanding of how behavioiural traits vary across the range, particularly with respect to traits that . . . → Read More: Hot off the press! Toads at the invasion front are more prone to explore and take risks

Quoll school is in session..

Scientists (including Lizard Lab associate Jonno Webb) have been trying to ameliorate the impact of toxic cane toads on the threatened northern quoll. They have been doing this using taste aversion learning, where quolls are fed nausea-inducing cane toad sausages from which they develop a negative association and thereafter avoid. There is evidence that . . . → Read More: Quoll school is in session..

Lizard Lab launches new Behaviour and Cognition Centre!

We have acquired an amazing new indoor space in which we can study lizard and toad behaviour and cognition. We have a small room for a Morris Water Maze for studying spatial cognition (ably set up by Jodie Gruber), a much larger room with lots of shelves and CCTV where we are currently working . . . → Read More: Lizard Lab launches new Behaviour and Cognition Centre!

Dispatches from the field: Australian Geographic expedition to the Kimberley, WA

The Kimberley in Western Australia is a vast expanse of wilderness, famous for its pristine gorges and unique fauna. It’s also home to the highest species richness of goannas—up to 10 are sympatric in some areas. Sean Doody (University of Tennessee and Newcastle), Simon Clulow (University of Newcastle) and Colin McHenry (Monash University) have . . . → Read More: Dispatches from the field: Australian Geographic expedition to the Kimberley, WA

Investigating impacts of the invasive cane toad on populations of Magnificent Tree Frog in the east Kimberley, Western Australia

Since its introduction to Queensland in 1935, the cane toad (Rhinella marina) has spread westwards across northern Australia, is now present in all but one of the major regions of the Wet-Dry tropics, and has just started to spread into the last region – the pristine Kimberley wilderness. While a review of available data . . . → Read More: Investigating impacts of the invasive cane toad on populations of Magnificent Tree Frog in the east Kimberley, Western Australia

Dispatches from the lab: how smart are cane toads? Also, interested in a cognition internship?

In case you are not Australian, you may not know that the cane toad was introduced into Australia in 1935 to control beetle pests in sugar cane fields in Queensland. Martin is working with Pau Carazo, Rick Shine and Josh Amiel on toad cognition and brain structure. In particular, we are interested in whether . . . → Read More: Dispatches from the lab: how smart are cane toads? Also, interested in a cognition internship?