Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Better Smaller, But More

15.04.2002


In the city, frogs do not feel as comfortable as in the wild nature because of dirty water, a lack of food, and dangers at every turn. That is why the life of frogs in urban areas is shorter. However, they do not leave these habitats, but adapt to them. Apparently, there are two ways to adapt: either become more tolerant or increase the number of progeny.



Every spring from 1998 to 2001, Elena A. Severtseva and her colleagues from the Biological Faculty of the Moscow State University studied the spawn of two frog species (Rana temporaria and Rana arvalis) most common in Moscow parks and ponds. The scientists counted the number of layings and the quantity of eggs in each laying and measured the diameter of eggs and their yolks using a microscope.

In average, Moscow frogs have smaller eggs than their sisters in the countryside, but each urban frog lays several hundred eggs more than the rural one. The egg diameter is about one millimetre, and the difference between egg sizes in the city and suburbs constitutes several decimal fractions of millimetre, but that is sufficient to gain in quantity. At the same time, urban conditions do not change the yolk size in relation to that of the whole egg; sometimes yolks of Moscow frogs are even larger. Therefore, the embryo has a sufficient food supply to grow into the tadpole, though tadpoles from small eggs need a longer time for development.


The amphibians were studied in several places within Moscow: near the Gorodnya River, in the vicinity of the Kapotnya Oil Plant (district Brateevo), in Vostryakovo (in a pond adjacent to the Moscow Ring Highway and in other three ponds in the park near the cemetery), in the area of Matweevskoe (the Setun River floodplain), and near the railway station Ramenskoe. Similar observations were done at the biological stationary near town Zvenigorod.

Both frog species spend most of their life on the land and come into water pools only to spawn. City frogs are very reticent and almost silent at the breeding time. The researchers have heard their sounds only in Matveevskoe. While the spawn of suburb frogs is assembled in large clusters, that of Moscow ones appears in small clusters all over the spawning area. Oil products and chemicals dissolved in water kill many embryos. The rate of embryo death in Brateevo is five times as high as in natural conditions and reaches 12%. Hence, to survive in cities, the high quantity of eggs is more important than a large size of embryos, the scientists conclude.

Alexander Barne | alphagalileo

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Single-stranded DNA and RNA origami go live
15.12.2017 | Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard

nachricht New antbird species discovered in Peru by LSU ornithologists
15.12.2017 | Louisiana State University

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: First-of-its-kind chemical oscillator offers new level of molecular control

DNA molecules that follow specific instructions could offer more precise molecular control of synthetic chemical systems, a discovery that opens the door for engineers to create molecular machines with new and complex behaviors.

Researchers have created chemical amplifiers and a chemical oscillator using a systematic method that has the potential to embed sophisticated circuit...

Im Focus: Long-lived storage of a photonic qubit for worldwide teleportation

MPQ scientists achieve long storage times for photonic quantum bits which break the lower bound for direct teleportation in a global quantum network.

Concerning the development of quantum memories for the realization of global quantum networks, scientists of the Quantum Dynamics Division led by Professor...

Im Focus: Electromagnetic water cloak eliminates drag and wake

Detailed calculations show water cloaks are feasible with today's technology

Researchers have developed a water cloaking concept based on electromagnetic forces that could eliminate an object's wake, greatly reducing its drag while...

Im Focus: Scientists channel graphene to understand filtration and ion transport into cells

Tiny pores at a cell's entryway act as miniature bouncers, letting in some electrically charged atoms--ions--but blocking others. Operating as exquisitely sensitive filters, these "ion channels" play a critical role in biological functions such as muscle contraction and the firing of brain cells.

To rapidly transport the right ions through the cell membrane, the tiny channels rely on a complex interplay between the ions and surrounding molecules,...

Im Focus: Towards data storage at the single molecule level

The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.

Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

AKL’18: The opportunities and challenges of digitalization in the laser industry

07.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Engineers program tiny robots to move, think like insects

15.12.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

One in 5 materials chemistry papers may be wrong, study suggests

15.12.2017 | Materials Sciences

New antbird species discovered in Peru by LSU ornithologists

15.12.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>