Though South American animals have been named little is known about many of them. Scientists fell into the trap of taking frogs for granted. They got more than they bargained for. Aparasphenodon brunoi and Corythomantis greeningi are the first venomous frogs to be identified. The dart frogs have bony spines on their faces that they jab into potential predators.
Like snakes, the frogs inject a toxin into the body of threats. This is odd really, because the frogs have evolved this defence while having no natural enemies. The target of a frog was Edmund Brodie, a biologist, who suffered intense, radiating pain lasting for over five hours. He was lucky: a gram of this venom can kill 300,000 mice or 80 people. It would take many frogs, though, to make this much toxin.
◆ Biology by Ty Buchanan ◆