A network that helps people worldwide obtain rapid advice and information on crop protection, including the identification and management of plant pests.
PestNet is a network that helps people worldwide obtain rapid advice and information on crop protection, including the identification and management of plant pests. It started in 1999. Anyone with an interest in plant protection is welcome to join. PestNet is free and is moderated, ensuring that messages are confined to plant protection.
September 2009. Call of the Cane toad. Samoa asked for assistance in recognition of the toad as there is a possibility that a population has been established in the country. The toad is present nearby in American Samoa. The request was for ideas on how to search for small populations of the Cane toad. Recently, a gravid female was found and a report from the community in the area suggests a call was heard. The rainy season approaches so there is concern.
Members said that the call is very distinctive. A small shallow pond (a few inches will suffice) or even a moat could be put temporarily in the suspect area, and the toads will definitely come to it. Prof Rick Shine in Sydney has a website (www.canetoadsinoz.com). Any water is a major attractant.
A member of the State of Hawaii DLNR/DOFAW) said:
Dogs trained for snake searches have got very sick from picking up cane toads in Guam. So, dogs could/do detect cane toads – but most trainers will not use expensive trained dogs if any cane toads are present, as it is too hazardous for the dogs.
Later, another question from Samoa asked about chemicals that might be used to kill tadpoles in streams. Are there any safe products? There has been a suggestion that caffeine could be used. In response, a member from Hawaii, suggested care when using caffeine. A 2% solution of caffeine has been used there for control of coqui frogs. But there was concern that it might get into the groundwater, where it breaks down slowly in comparison to soil. Also, information from California indicates that caffeine from wastewater breaks down very slowly in salt water, and causes damage to corals.