Australia warns travelers to not bring in hitchhiking toads In this undated photo provided by Australia's Department of Agriculture and Water Resources, a black-spined toad is seen inside a shoe of a passenger from Indonesia, in Cairns, northeast Australia. (Australia's Department of Agriculture and Water Resources via AP/AP Photo/Dmitri Lovetsky)
Australia warns travelers to not bring in hitchhiking toads
Lexile

Australian quarantine authorities have urged travelers through Asia to avoid bringing in hitchhiking amphibians. The warning comes after a passenger arrived at an airport with a dead Indonesian toad in his shoe.
 
The Department of Agriculture of Water Resources warned travelers to check their luggage and other belongings for biohazards. Toads from Thailand and Indonesia were found recently at three Australian airports. Authorities are confident that all the passengers were unaware they were carrying toads. The passengers were not smuggling wildlife.
 
The department's head of biosecurity Lyn O'Connor said a sniffer dog reacted to a shoe that an Australian was wearing as he arrived at Cairns Airport in northeast Australia.
 
The black-spined toad was found by a biosecurity officer and had only recently died. It was probably alive when the passenger put the shoe on in Indonesia, O'Connor said in a statement.
 
A live banded bullfrog was found in a passenger's shoe at Perth Airport on Australia's west coast. This was after a flight from Thailand, the department said. Officials could not immediately say whether the passenger was wearing the shoe or had packed it in luggage.
 
A live black-spined toad arrived on a flight from Thailand at Melbourne Airport in southeast Australia. It was found in a woman's luggage, the department said.

The black-spined toad could significantly damage the Australian environment. The toad could carry exotic parasites or disease, O'Connor said.
 
Australia has some of the world's toughest quarantine regulations. These are in a bid to keep pests and diseases from infiltrating its isolated borders and destroying the country's unique wildlife. The strict quarantine policies captured global attention in 2015. That's when Johnny Depp and his then-wife, Amber Heard, were charged with illegally bringing their pet Yorkshire terriers into Australia. Depp was there to work on a movie.
 
They subsequently made an awkward apology video that warned others about violating the quarantine rules. The couple avoided jail.

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CRITICAL THINKING QUESTION
What hazards do the toads pose?
Write your answers in the comments section below


COMMENTS (8)
  • alicek-
    5/16/2017 - 09:17 a.m.

    1. Australia has some of the world's toughest quarantine regulations.
    2. A live banded bullfrog was found in someones shoe at an airport.
    3. A black-spined toad was found in a women's luggage.
    1. Could these creatures kill somebody?
    2. How do we stop these things from getting into peoples stuff?
    1. I would be terrified of these animal creature things.

  • adamj-
    5/16/2017 - 09:28 a.m.

    The toads could damage the wild life in Australia.
    The toads can carry parasites and diseases.
    The Australian quarantine department have asked people from Asia to check there belongings for the toads.
    How did the toad get into the man's shoe?
    How are the toads get into people's luggage?
    I think that people should check there luggage before they leave there homes.

  • madelync-
    5/17/2017 - 08:36 a.m.

    The hazards that toads pose are that the toad can carry exotic parasites and diseases. They want things spreading from the toads that are sneaking in with people on mistake.

  • arianam-
    5/19/2017 - 08:34 a.m.

    The toads are coming from one country to another without people noticing, so they can spread parasites and disease throughout the animals in the environment, or tto humans.

  • kimberlyc-
    5/19/2017 - 08:34 a.m.

    the hazards the toads pose is they could bring exotic parasites and disease.Also Australia has the toughest quarantine regulations.

  • oliviag-ver
    5/19/2017 - 09:01 a.m.

    The toads could pose quite a few hazards. For example, if a toad has a disease it could infect other wildlife, and potentially could kill off some animals in Australia. Another problem could be that since it is not used to the climate in Australia it could die, and if toads keep "hitch hiking" they could die and then possibly become endangered or something along that line in the area where they do come from.

  • angeliquep-bur
    5/22/2017 - 06:27 p.m.

    The toads pose a hazard to the travelers health, because according to O'Connor the toads can spread exotic diseases and parasites. And I'm guessing that the percanetage of people who wear thinner socks to a warmer place like Australia is pretty high. Because those people wear thinner socks they could get diseases faster.

  • aidenm1-bur
    5/22/2017 - 08:42 p.m.

    The toad brings the threat of new diseases and other problems to Australia.

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