Frogs With No Lungs Discovered in Borneo


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This funny looking frog found recently in the Indonesian section of Borneo has scientists very excited. Besides being a very rare breed, it also has no lungs!

The frog dubbed Barbourula Kalimnatanesis, is the first lungless frog ever discovered. In fact there are only a couple of other creatures - a kind of salamander and one snakelike amphibian that have no lungs.

The two-inch frog seems to breath through its skin, much like other frogs. However, it also has no airway opening in its throat and only a membrane lining in its thoracic cavity.

Animals developed lungs when they moved from the sea to land millions of years ago. Scientists believe this frog has evolved backwards - that is - it lost its lungs. While they don't know for sure, they believe it maybe because of extremely cold and rapid water streams, which have a lot of dissolved oxygen to absorb. Frogs have a low metabolism so do not need that much oxygen.

Scientists believe that by studying this backward evolution, they may be able to find out how lungs developed.

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