Say your prayers, cane toads

Though Australian scientists are working to linkurl:engineer a virus;http://www.the-scientist.com/article/display/54497/ to control the invasive pests, an Aussie politician has suggested a less subtle solution: kill 'em all. Shane Knuth, a legislator in the northeastern state of Queensland (where cane toads thrive), has proposed and official day for residents to hunt down and kill the exotic invaders. Cane toads have plagued the land down under for decades, and their increasing numbers and tox

Bob Grant
Bob Grant

Bob Grant is Editor in Chief of The Scientist, where he started in 2007 as a Staff Writer.

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Apr 3, 2008
Though Australian scientists are working to linkurl:engineer a virus;http://www.the-scientist.com/article/display/54497/ to control the invasive pests, an Aussie politician has suggested a less subtle solution: kill 'em all. Shane Knuth, a legislator in the northeastern state of Queensland (where cane toads thrive), has proposed and official day for residents to hunt down and kill the exotic invaders. Cane toads have plagued the land down under for decades, and their increasing numbers and toxic skin threaten the survival of native Australian animal species. For a feature in this month's issue of __The Scientist__, Brendan Borrell traveled to Australia and met some of the researchers aiming to modify a __Ranavirus__ that could decimate toad populations. He also visited with linkurl:"Toadbusters";http://www.the-scientist.com/2008/4/1/57/1/ seeking to exterminate the pest using brute force. Knuth's proposal for a day of amphibian massacre, which he dubbed "Toad Day Out," calls for an even wider effort. The plan has gained the approval...
, an Aussie politician has suggested a less subtle solution: kill 'em all. Shane Knuth, a legislator in the northeastern state of Queensland (where cane toads thrive), has proposed and official day for residents to hunt down and kill the exotic invaders. Cane toads have plagued the land down under for decades, and their increasing numbers and toxic skin threaten the survival of native Australian animal species. For a feature in this month's issue of __The Scientist__, Brendan Borrell traveled to Australia and met some of the researchers aiming to modify a __Ranavirus__ that could decimate toad populations. He also visited with linkurl:"Toadbusters";http://www.the-scientist.com/2008/4/1/57/1/ seeking to exterminate the pest using brute force. Knuth's proposal for a day of amphibian massacre, which he dubbed "Toad Day Out," calls for an even wider effort. The plan has gained the approval of Australia's Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, which told the linkurl:__Associated Press__;http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/O/ODD_AUSTRALIA_TOAD_HUNTING?SITE=CAVIC&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT that the hunt was acceptable as long as the toads were killed humanely.

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