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This is Captain Triball speaking. We are now cruising at 10,000 feet. Please remain seated and buckled for the duration of our flight due to guaranteed turbulence. If you feel sick at any time – and you very likely will because the topic this week is birth defects – please locate and use the nearest paper bag. Thank you. That is all.
All this obesity talk in the news today. It’s a hot topic for discussion and debate, particularly when it comes to children. What’s going on? Is it just lack of exercise? Or too much of the wrong kind of food? This week, FrogTV invites you to lace up your sneaks. Obesity is gaining on us and may be getting a jump start in the womb.
Credit Where Credit is Due
Amphibians are among the oldest species on the planet, but suddenly a new frog appears, Triball. Who? How? Why? All of these questions and more are explored in the first of many FrogTV exclusives. (Spoiler alert: evidence points to a common farm chemical called atrazine; it kills weeds like crazy but creates crazy changes in wildlife.)
You Say You Want an Evolution
The more things change, the more change itself seems to accelerate. Genetic damage caused by chemical pesticides and herbicides may be influencing how species evolve. Frogs in particular are considered an indicator species. That means mutations documented by scientists in frogs could start showing up elsewhere. Like our mirrors.
Endocrine disruptor or flying trash compactor? Our intrepid reporter cooks up a plate of corn hash and heads to the swamp to ask Triball, “What does this steaming plate of food have to do with mutant frogs?” A lot, it seems, with evidence indicating the common weed killer atrazine, used on corn fields, creates freaky changes in male frogs. Exhibit A: eggs in testes. You read that right. Now see it.
Parlez vous, “Toxic chemicals?” Sprechen Sie, “Hideous mutations?”
It’s time to learn the lingua franca of global devastation, and Triball lives to enlighten. No, you can’t put him in your pocket as a personal translation device. You can join him in the studio for a quick language lesson. Vy gavareeteh, “Atrazine?”