Dart Frog or Miner Toad

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3 years ago

In the jungles of southern Venezuela you will find a jewel of nature, the mining frog or dart frog (Dendrobates leucomelas). It is a small daytime terrestrial amphibian, highly visible in dense vegetation, a member of the Dendrobatidae family that groups more than 200 colorful species, each with a unique coloration pattern. It displays bold colors to warn potential predators of its toxicity or bad taste.

Several indigenous ethnic groups in Venezuela use the skin of these amphibians to obtain their toxic secretion, where they are then mixed with other catalysts resulting in the famous Curare (it can also be derived from fungi, plants and other animals). This mixture is applied to the tip of your darts or arrows and the effect of this toxin (Batrachotoxin) comes from an alkaloid compound that prevents the transmission of the nerve impulse to the muscles.

The use of natural toxins is essential for the subsistence of ethnic groups. Due to their pharmacological properties they can save lives due to their anesthetic, analgesic and anti-inflammatory power.

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