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Herps In The News Local or national articles where reptiles or amphibians have made it into the news media. Please cite sources.

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Old 03-17-2023, 06:26 PM   #1
Martin Nowak
North American BullFrog - Exotic Distribution and Recipes

In the FC section "General Herp Talk" I provided a brief review of the book "Exotic Amphibians and Reptiles"; followed by an excellent discussion by John Zillmer.

Doing a bit of easy research in followup I refreshed on bullfrog farming in the U.S.

The book notes only the following about the North American Bullfrog:

“… exotic to AZ, CA, CO, FL, HI, ID, IA, MN, MT, NV, NM, OR,UT, WA, WY.”

“ … introduced in Hicoria (FL) in the mid-1900’s for farming.”
“ … introduced in late 1890’s in HI for food and exotic insect control from CA, where it is also exotic”.
“ … introduced in (northern) IA in the 1940’s for human consumption”.

Missing from that chapter is mention of the fairly robust bullfrog business started by Albert Broel in the 1930's after the Great Depression. People were seeking every possible way to earn some money.

"Albert Broel, the founder of the American Frog Canning Company and author of “Frog Raising for Pleasure and Profit” promised a steady stream of income and all you needed was a small pond and a few pair of breeders to get started."

The first Herptile captive breeding project?

"Broel’s lessons for one dollar per chapter or $14.95 for all 22 chapters, included details on habitat, breeding and canning in order to prepare giant bullfrogs for market. It also included tasty new recipes."

The first Herptile Care Sheet?

"In the mid 1930s, the U.S. Postal Service indicted Broel and his employee, Sylvester Schutt, for mail fraud and the Federal Trade Commission also ordered Broel to cease and desist from making what it called misleading claims in his frog advertising."

The first Herptiles via USPS?

"Eventually, all criminal charges were dismissed, and Broel entered into a settlement with the FTC, agreeing to stop saying that a certificate from his course made someone a “qualified frog culturist,” and to stop sayin that frog meat could cure certain diseases."

The first Herptile "handling certificate"?
The first Herptile "wonder cure"?

Of primary interest is the literature indicates that Broel advertised and sold bullfrogs all over the U.S. And it is said he became wealthy selling bullfrogs, ultimately moving back to Detroit and into real estate investing. We can reasonably surmise that many, perhaps most, of the exotic range distributions were a result of Broel's business. And also other similar bullfrog businesses of the time. The Great Depression caused significant range extension of the Bullfrog?

In one of the references below are several recipes including "Giant Bullfrog Pineapple Salad". Perhaps readers can provide reviews of the recipes!

There were other bullfrog breeding "opportunities" during the 1930's selling mail order bullfrogs across the country:
Old 03-17-2023, 07:00 PM   #2
Socratic Monologue
That pineapple salad sounds mighty good. I wonder if a person could substitute iguana?

Seriously, you're right in implying that Meshaka et al should have given this some air time. There's a lot of this sort of ignoring the role/responsibility of businesses and other profit seekers in order to instead blame end users and consumers in a number of environmental harms.

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