Mutant frogs have transparent bodies

Unusual frogs with transparent bodies with clearly visible bones and internal organs may be the result of severe pollution in Russia.


Two transparent frogs caught from a lake in Krasnouralsk, Russia. Photo: CEN.

Frogs with many deformities were found near the city center of Krasnouralsk in the Sverdlovsk region, Russia. This is a heavily polluted area. The city of Krasnouralsk was born in 1832 after gold was discovered here. However, this city developed based on copper pyrite mining. Abandoned copper processing plants with hundreds of tons of chemicals and explosives may be the cause of the pollution.

According to Mysterious Universe, scientists from Ural Federal University, Russia, found mutant frogs in a lake contaminated with oleum (evaporated sulfuric acid) and toluene (benzene solvent). The lake water turns orange.

Vladimir Vershinin, head of the Department of Zoology at the Ural Federal Institute of Sciences, said he was not surprised to find mutant animals in this lake. A female frog has many extra toes and arms. The skin of these frogs is transparent, revealing all bones and internal organs.

Scientists are conducting tests to determine whether the real cause of the mutation in the frogs is pollution or parasites. Vershinin said he will continue to monitor the lake to conclude whether the frog mutation is an individual mutation or a species’ tendency to mutate.

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