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5 December 2013 11:26 am ,
Vol. 342 ,
Dyslexia, a learning disability that hinders reading, hasn't been associated with deficits in vision, hearing, or...
Exotic, elusive, and dangerous, snakes have fascinated humankind for millennia. They can be hard to find, yet their...
Researchers have sequenced and analyzed the first two snake genomes, which represent two evolutionary extremes. The...
Snake venoms are remarkably complex mixtures that can stun or kill prey within minutes. But more and more researchers...
At age 30, Dutch biologist Freek Vonk has built up a respectable career as a snake scientist. But in his home country,...
Since arriving on the island of Guam in the 1940s, the brown tree snake ( Boiga irregularis ) has extirpated native...
An animal rights group known as the Nonhuman Rights Project filed lawsuits in three New York courts this week in an...
Researchers have been hot on the trail of the elusive Denisovans, a type of ancient human known only by their DNA and...
- 5 December 2013 11:26 am , Vol. 342 , #6163
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ScienceShot: How Tree Frogs Keep Their Feet Sticky
2 July 2011 8:00 pm
Trying to re-stick a piece of tape to a surface after it's become dusty is infuriating. So how do tree frogs pull it off? It turns out the arboreal amphibians, which secrete gluey mucus from pads on their feet, refresh their stickiness with every step they take. Biologists presenting at the Society for Experimental Biology annual conference in Glasgow found that the White's tree frog (Litoria caerulea) self-cleans as it climbs thanks to special channels in its feet that slime away dirt and debris. When the frog moves its limbs forward, the mucus and any accumulated gunk slip through the channels and stay behind while new sticky mucus is secreted in its place. The researchers say these findings could one day inspire such technology as self-cleaning medical bandages and self-renewing adhesives.
See more ScienceShots.