28 August 2020
In case you missed it in early August, here’s amazing news from Kobe University about the way a beetle survives being eaten by a frog.
The frog is the dark-spotted frog in Japan (Pelophylax nigromaculatus), above.
The beetle is a water scavenger beetle, Regimbartia attenuata.
When the frog eats the beetle, the beetle is (obviously) inside the frog’s digestive tract which resembles a long cave. Spelunca is Latin for cave.
The beetle actively crawls through the digestive tract to escape out the vent (anus) of the frog. Bugs that don’t keep moving don’t make it out alive.
Kobe University provided this movie to show what happens.
The word “scavenger” in the beetle’s common name may explain why he isn’t repulsed by what he’s crawling through as he goes spelunking inside the frog.
Read more about the study in this 4 Aug 2020 news release from Kobe University: An insect species can actively escape from the vents of predators via the digestive system.
(frog photo from Wikimedia Commons, all other media courtesy Kobe University via this news release)