Researchers from the University of Sydney have joined the battle to rid the Lucky Country of cane toads by suggesting cat food might be a useful tool in seeing off the invasive amphibian. They found that just a small amount of the feline chow left next to Northern Territory ponds was enough to attract carnivorous meat ants, …
... and if it works...
then the population of the meat eating ants will adjust to eat all of the 200 Million toads.
And afterwards we would only need to deal with an overpopulation of meat eating ants.
During that time I would better stay clear of australia...
Use the audio blaster to lure them into a 'march of death' towards a haemeroid cream dispenser (or a local Chinese Toad exporter), which then tips them into a conveyor belt-fed 'freezer of doom'.
Once solid they can be catapulted (or mangoneled or trebucheted I guess) into the sea (or sold to the Chinese).
Meanwhile the catfood brigade can be cleaning up the small-fry, though I guess someone (or maybe two people?) would need a sort of 'toad-vac' to suck up the carcasses for delivery to the local furnace/Chinese exporters.
I wonder how long before there is a national 'Toad-bash' day? oh too late (see http://parkhowell.com/green-advertising-and-marketing/nothing-like-a-good-poisonous-toad-bash-to-celebrate-earth-hour) they are doing that already.
Oh those upside-down scamps!
And the next environmental disaster ....
... huge swarms of meat ants wipe out what little wildlife the Cane Toads have left behind?
Fail - for the original introduction of the toads to Oz
At least this time the species (the ants) being used to deal with the problem (the toads) is native and the ant population spike that will likely result can be dealt with by the ants natural, and indigenous, predators.
Meat Ants 1 Cane Toads 0
Isn't science wonderful ?
I await with bated breath news from the colonies about the plague of giant, predatory ants destroying the ecosystem.
Won't this attract cats?
"Now we have a huge cat problem, how will we sort this out?"
"We are hoping this will attract dogs to sort it out."
"Then how will we sort out the upcoming dog problem?"
"errrr, various wild beasts will be released..."
You can't fight mother nature, only piss her off.
Let's hope that whatever they find that works best, will also work on Stephen Conroy....
Grenade because that's what Conroy and his equivalent in the UK (Mandy, are you listening?) deserve up their arses.
Don't forget to pull the pin, there already so full of it they wouldn't notice otherwise.
Reminds me of something...
She swallowed the dog to catch the cat,
She swallowed the cat to catch the mouse,
She swallowed the mouse to catch the spider...
#I know an old lady who swallowed a cane toad->Meat ant->Bird->Cat->Dog->Goat->Cow->Horse...
I think I've seen this before
Pretty sure it was a Syfy original movie not too long ago... Where's the mutant ant icon...
cause unnecessary pain or distress
I didn't feel a thing....
Won't this lead to Prawn infestations in Australia?
"Won't this lead to Prawn infestations in Australia?"
Only if they keep downloading that Paris Hilton webclip.
...oh wait,m you said "prawn"
I for one,
welcome the cane toads' new arthropodal overlords.
Biological warfare FTW
Meat ants Vs Cane toads Vs Feral cats !!!!!
Introduced from Hawaii? Think again!
The Register journos might want to correct themselves. The cane toad was not introduced from Hawaii. It is indigenous to Central and South America and was introduced into Australia after a successful introduction to Hawaii.
"When we increased ant densities by artificial baiting, 98% of metamorph toads were encountered, and 84% attacked, within the two-minute observation period."
They observed for a full two minutes?
do you really want to encourage a critter that's called a "meat ant"? And, um, aren't humans (even aussies) made out of meat too?
What's the betting it wipes out every other native Amphibian
My guess is that it might work against the Cane Toad, but it'll probably completely wipe out the remaining native Amphibians, or the Mudskipper, or some other more susceptable water margin species.
There are so many different habitats in Australia, it would be nearly impossible to test them all well.
If I were to try anything, I'd try one of the small islands that they've been introduced to; but only after many years of research into that specific ecosystem.
Honestly, I wouldn't take the risk though.
Funnily enough the cane toad was tested in Hawaii and past muster so was used in Aus to control another imported pest the cane beetle - needless to say that failed. Australia was left with a bloody great monster, meat eating toad that breeds better than rabbits and the bloddy thing is poisonous to most creatures. I just hope those ants aren't affected by the poison the toad and tadpoles secrete.
Best outcome cats come to eat cat food, meet toaddie, have a bite killing toad and snuff it. Gets rid of two major pests in one go and the ants get to eat cat.
Everything's Dangerous in Oz
The snakes are among the most deadly in the world, the spiders are poisonous, they have a octopus that'll kill ya, and even a tick that has been known to kill. Now I find they've got a bloody carniverous ant!! Lucky the people are so friendly.
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