A band of brave, intrepid Hungarians saved more than 16,000 frogs from certain, squishy death, according to United Press International.
"A group of professional and amateur volunteers spent the weekend trundling buckets full of frogs known formally as European spadefoot toads across a busy highway near Farmos in central Hungary," UPI reported. Apparently the frogs are annually forced out of the ground by heavy seasonal rains, and once they're out, the little buggers hop like mad to the nearest highway -- perhaps inspired by a popular 1980s video game. But UPI notes that, in recent years, toad carnage has been high.
So volunteers -- both, I must note, amateur and professional -- herd these frogs into buckets that have been partly buried into the ground and, once the bucket is filled with amphibians, the volunteers rip them (the buckets) out of the ground and gently relocate the frogs to a nearby swamp. The whole exercise must look to passersby like a strange combination of rodeo, billiards and one of the 10 plagues of Egypt.
But the most interesting part of this story, to me, is the fact that there are apparently "professional volunteers" that do this sort of thing, according to UPI. How does one become a professional toad herder? Is it possible to major in "amphibious crowd management?" Do you need a license? Is there a professional society you join?