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April 19
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Herpetologists were studying tadpole frogs in the foothills of the Western Ghats in India when they saw one of the amphibians with a strange tumor on its side.

Scientists were amazed when they realized it was a slimy-legged mushroom with a neat gray cap. And it grew right out of the body of a living frog. They described this extraordinary case of "coexistence" in the journal Reptiles & Amphibians.

Environmentalists and mycologists joined the discussion of the find.

Indian researchers said that this tiny Rao's Intermediate Golden-backed narrow head Frog  (Indosylvirana intermedia) was found along with 40 of its affined in a rain puddle on the side of the road.

One individual sitting on a branch had an obvious tumor on its left side. Upon closer inspection, it is clear that a mushroom is growing from its side. A mushroom growing from the side of a living frog has never been recorded, the researchers write in the report.

This is probably merely a superficial skin infection of Mycenae. They can persist for a long time, like most human skin fungal infections, said one of the scientists, Christoffer Bugge Harder.

His colleague, Thomas Horton, points to the fact that the frog's skin showed no obvious signs of distress, suffering, or skin disease, such as a change in skin color or the spread of white filaments from the fungus. In his opinion, the little mushroom simply found a "base" for itself, where it grew safely.

Previous studies of fungi of the Mycenaean family have shown that they can grow not only in dead tissues, but also, for example, in the roots of living plants. This new example involving the body of a living being shows that these fungal species are extremely adaptable. Mycologists, however, argue that it is unlikely that the fungus can grow on humans in the same way.

The “owner” of this mushroom was not taken to the laboratory; the scientists left it in the natural environment, so its future fate is unknown.

Conservationists speculate that it may play a new role in its ecosystem by becoming a spreader of fungal spores during jumps.

In the past, mycologists have described zombie mushrooms that slowly embalmed their victims.

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