Wednesday, June 15, 2005

No Newts is Good Newts is reporting that poisonous newts have established themselves on an island off the coast of Alaska after they were accidentally released into the wild. A high school student collected several dozen rough-skinned newts (Taricha granulosa) from a nearby island for a science project, only to have them escape while cleaning the tank. Baranof Island, home to Sitka High School, did not have any previous records of the newt, and in fact has only one other amphibian species present. The permits required to collect and keep the newts were not procured for the student's project. Scientists think that the newts were previously prevented from spreading naturally to new islands by their inability to navigate through salt water.

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