( Before the earthquake in Italy that struck the city of L’Aquila on 6 April 2009, Dr Rachel Grant of the UK’s Open University was monitoring the toad population at San Ruffino Lake, around 74km from the quake’s epicentre. Five days before the 6.3-magnitude shake, “the number of male common toads in the breeding colony fell by 96 per cent”, and most breeding pairs and males hopped it three days before the earth moved. Now NASA scientists think they know how the toads predicted the devastating quake, a team led by geophysicist Dr Friedemann Freund, demonstrated that rocks under extreme tectonic stress release charged particles, which travel through the surrounding rock and into the atmosphere. Their electrical charge is sufficient to ionize the air, creating “massive amounts” of positive airborne ions. So, if you live in an earthquake prone area, it might be worth getting yourself a nice little colony of toads.)
Toads can predict earthquakes.