By Brett Amy Thelen and Dave Huth
We wrote this because amphibians rock. And, as you will see, they rock hard. After understanding just how awesome and amazing amphibians are, everyone should love amphibians to the max. Everyone should bake amphibians a birthday cake. Everyone should elect amphibians for class president. Everyone should concede that amphibians are the coolest vertebrates to ever stare goggle-eyed at the inscrutable sky above.
1. Amphibian Evolution goes WAAAAAAAAY Back
Amphibians are old. As in, “a scale of oldness so vast and deep it crushes your mind to imagine even a fraction of it.” You know how it’s nearly impossible to comprehend what it means to go back in time A MILLION YEARS? Now try thinking about a million years times three hundred. Amphibians arose directly from the first “tetrapods,” which means “everything on land you know that’s not a bug, including yourself.” Without them first flopping up out of the sea into a completely new and challenging life without gills, nothing else about your dry, leggy existence under the sun could be possible. They’ve survived multiple mass extinction events, including the one that wiped out the dinosaurs. …