As we all know, frogs mostly reproduce in the water. But the latest research shows, that there are increasing numbers of frogs, that do it on dry land. Scientist thought they do that to protect their eggs from aquatic predators. Surprisingly the truth lies elsewhere, as it appears like they do this to avoid competition from other male frogs.
Male frogs that reproduced out of the water had smaller testes than their colleges who had sex in the water.
DEFENSELESS FROG EGGS
Because frog sex often involves external fertilization, frog eggs are particularly prone to being gobbled by hungry fish or other predators. The same holds true when the eggs turn into defenseless tadpoles. So it would make sense that frogs would hop out of aquatic environments teeming with egg-hungry creatures and attempt to get their groove on in more private locales. But even on land, frog eggs can face predation and other dangers, such as newly hatched tadpoles falling off a leaf into a dangerous stream. So the researchers began to wonder if frogs were mating on dry land for another reason – for males to avoid competition from other males.
SMALLER REPRODUCING ORGANS = AVOIDING COMPETITION
If the theory was correct, it would follow that the testes belonging to male frogs mating on land would be smaller than those possessed by water breeders. That’s because in the relatively crowded aquatic environment, frogs would need to produce more prodigious amounts of sperm in the face of all the competition to try to ensure that their seeds were successful, which would lead to larger testes. The team discovered that this was the real case. Male frogs that reproduced out of the water had smaller testes than their colleges who had sex in the water. So it appears like the frogs with smaller testes figured out they would not be “good enough” for their chosen frog ladies if they saw their frog friends with a bigger package. Good job my slippery, not perticullary well endowed frog friends!
H/T: New Atlas