ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Frog Prince or Princess

Updated on March 13, 2010

The Frog Prince or Princess?

The Grimm Part is Right

Imagine you’re reading to your young child out of his favorite book, "All About Animals. " When you get to the section on amphibians, he points to the frogs and proudly states: "The daddies lay the eggs."

You think, "Isn’t that cute?" Since he’s too young to comprehend the reproductive cycle, you’ll smile and correct him in a way he’ll understand.

"That’s almost right, son. Frogs do lay eggs, but it’s the mommy birds, fish, turtles, frogs and other animals that always lay the eggs."

Your child looks you in the eye, and proceeds to tell you, "That used to be true. Now the Daddy frogs lay eggs. I read the dramatic report released in Monday’s Proceedings of the National Academy of Science."

Your astonishment at your child’s scholarly response is overshadowed by the thought of the environmental tragedy.

The introduction is fictitious, but sadly the chemical assault causing the sex-reversal in frogs is true. The study was conducted at UC Berkeley and was released March 8, 2010. It was picked up by many major news sources including FOX News, Reuters, NPR and Scientific American.

UC Berkley’s Professor of Biology, Dr. Tyrone Hayes, links the functional sex-reversal in frogs to the herbicide, atrazine. Dr. Hayes and his team of biologists studied 40 African clawed frogs which were kept in water contaminated with 2.5 ppb (parts per billion) of atrazine. The current drinking water standard established by the EPA is 3 ppb.

"Before, we knew we got fewer males than we should have, and we got hermaphrodites, Hayes reported. (These are plants or animals with both male and female reproductive organs.) Now we have clearly shown that many of these animals are sex-reversed males. While still genetically male, the sex-reversed ‘female’ frogs mated and successfully reproduced. "

Hayes also stated they are still studying the reasons for this development but believe that the sex change occurs because atrazine turns on an enzyme called aromatase, which is the machinery, if you will, that converts testosterone into estrogen. About 10% of the males turned into females and the rest that didn’t turn were chemically castrated.

PAN (Pestcide Action Network of North America) noted that in October, 2009, the EPA officially reopened an examination of atrazine, despite the fact that it had been reviewed and approved for continued use in 2003 and received an all clear in 2006. The agency will spend the next year reviewing this herbicide. The chemical is banned in Europe because of suspected links to other abnormalities in amphibians.

Beyond Pesticides out of Washington, D.C., lists the Atrazine common product names of 78 different manufactured products. Atrazine has been linked to cancer, birth defects, reproductive effects, neurotoxicity, kidney/liver damager, sensitizer/irritant, groundwater contamination and is toxic to fish. It’s the number one pesticide by volume in the U.S., and is found in 70% of U.S. water.

Many pesticides and herbicides are endocrine disruptors—they interact with the hormone system and have negative health impacts at extremely low levels of exposure. The levels are well below what the federal government has called "safe."


Susanne Morrone

Natural Health Chat


Sources: Beyond Pesticide’s Chemical Watch Factsheet

Pesticide Action Network of North America



    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)