Support IMB's Cane Toad Challenge research project

Professor Rob Capon and his team have discovered a way to turn the cane toads’ own toxin against them, which has real potential to eradicate this long-term pest.

Historically, the solutions for cane toad control have been somewhat inefficient, largely physical – picking them up, building barriers, or taking decisively violent action – labour-intensive attempts that have failed to deliver enduring solutions.

"The ecology of the toad is that tadpoles from one clutch seek out and eat the eggs from later lays,” Professor Capon says.

“Tadpoles could do this for several reasons: to reduce genetic competition so as to wipe out all other gene pools, or simply as a food source, but of course it’s difficult to ask them about their motives.”

Professor Capon and his team extracted the pheromone from adult toads and developed a system to lure tadpoles into traps.

The chemical scent trail leaks from the box into the surrounding water, where the tadpoles detect it and follow it back into the trap.

“Once they are in the box, they find it too hard to swim out again and remain trapped inside." 

How you can help

Are you an individual member of the public?

Become a member of the CTC community so we can keep you updated on our cane toad control research and outreach program.

Register as an IMB Cane Toad Challenge member

Are you part of a not-for-profit organisation, or a business or government agency? 

We're looking for relevant non-profit organisations, businesses and government agencies to help spread the word about the CTC and advise us on how cane toads affect your organisation. Apply today to become a CTC Affiliate.

Apply to become an IMB Cane Toad Challenge affiliate