Originally imported from Hawaii and released in Queensland as a biological control for beetle pests of sugar cane, the cane toad is now a well-established pest itself. Cane toads currently range across Queensland, the Northern Territory and into New South Wales and Western Australia.

How did the cane toad travel to Australia?

They were brought to Australia from Hawaii with the intention to control the cane beetle in sugar cane fields in north Queensland. Only 102 cane toads were brought over to be bred, and 2,400 toads were released in 1935.

How did the cane toad originally spread?

When beetles began devouring sugar cane fields in Queensland, Australia, in the 1930s, farmers got desperate. Nasty, primitive pesticides were a last resort, so they explored other options. Tales quickly spread of a toad that loved nothing more than to dine on cane beetles.

When did Australia introduce the cane toad?

1935

Cane toads were introduced to Australia in 1935 as a biological control method against the Greyback beetle that was destroying sugar cane crops. The Cane toad is native to South and Central America and had been used successfully as a biological control agent against beetles in Hawaii.

Where did the cane toad come from?

Cane toads are native to the Amazon basin in South America and north to the lower Rio Grande Valley in southern Texas.

Who brought cane toads to Australia?

In June 1935, Mungomery travelled to Hawaii where he captured 102 toads and brought them back to Australia.

What happens when you lick a cane toad?

Licking toads (typically cane toads) can be dangerous, however, and may cause muscle weakness, rapid heart rate, and vomiting. The Toad Venom being used today is from the Colorado River toad, also known as the Sonoran Desert toad. This nocturnal toad grows up to 7 inches in length and has dark, leathery skin.

How did cane toads get to where they are now?

Farmers first introduced about 100 cane toads (Rhinella marina) to Australia from their native range in South America in 1935 to control cane beetles (Dermolepida albohirtum), which were wreaking havoc on sugarcane plantations.

Why did the cane toads population grow so rapidly?

Scientists and average citizens alike have noticed that cane toads are not as big as they once were. Researchers hypothesize that when the cane toads are introduced or spread into a new area, they gorge themselves on the sudden new unlimited or uncontested food supply and grow quite large.

Can cane toads drown?

In order to reduce the population in areas of toad infestation, a torch, a bucket and a set of tongs will enable one to collect as many as necessary. Fill the bucket with water and put a lid on it. The toads will drown. Not very humane, but fast and very effective if done on a regular basis.

How did cane toads get to where they are now?

Farmers first introduced about 100 cane toads (Rhinella marina) to Australia from their native range in South America in 1935 to control cane beetles (Dermolepida albohirtum), which were wreaking havoc on sugarcane plantations.

How did cane toads get to Hawaii?

Plantation owners brought the toads to Florida, Hawaii, Puerto Rico and Australia in the 1930s to rid sugar cane fields of beetles.

How far have cane toads spread in Australia?

In 2009, toads crossed the Western Australian border with the Northern Territory, more than 2,000km from the site of their original release 74 years earlier. It was a dark day that conservationists had both dreaded and seen coming.