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Rhinella proboscidea: They’ll Love You to Death

June 3, 2013

This is Rhinella proboscidea:

Photo Credit: Axel Kwet,

In the animal kingdom, mating strategies can vary widely. In Rhinella proboscidea the strategy is simple: grab onto something, and don’t let go. R. proboscidea use an explosive breeding strategy.

In a species where the males outnumber the females, when mating season comes around, groups of up to 100 males may gather together in attempt to mate with a mere 20 females. In all this commotion and competition, it is not surprising that some of the females may become crushed in the attempt. For R. proboscidea, this is not an issue. If the female dies in the mating process, the male will simply collect her fertilized eggs, which will then develop despite the loss of the mother. While the strategy puts the female’s life in peril, it seems to work, regardless of the survival of the female.

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