Tadpoles falling from the sky in Japan?

Dead tadpoles and frogs were found in fields, gardens, a tennis court, and on car roofs near the Japan Sea coast last week. Was this an example of the classic Fortean phenomenon of animals raining from the heavens? From Discover:
Various objects and animals do occasionally fall from the sky: It’s called “Fafrotskies,” short for “fall from the skies.” These events generally occur when water spouts, storms, and strong winds suck objects from bodies of water and deposit them on land. But because there had been no reports of strong wind, many officials and meteorologists say this explanation can’t explain the torrent of tadpoles.

An alternative explanation is that birds who eat tadpoles and fish carried the animals in their mouths, then dropped them while flying. Still, some bird experts say that if this had happen, the tadpole carnage would have covered a more sizable area.
"It's Raining Tadpoles?" (Discover.com)
Falling fish and frog news round-up (Cabinet of Wonders)


  1. Ok, if they are indeed sucked up by winds or waterspouts, how come there is only one species in each ‘downpour?’ Wouldn’t you expect lots of similarly-sized critters, or atleast rocks and stuff? Plus if a waterspout can suck up aquatic animals, how come a tornado over land can’t (or apparently does not) cause a rain of chipmunks or something?

  2. i know it’s possible i’ve been in it. i literally watched it rain tiny tiny tiny frogs. yes, i was quite sober at the time (but wasn’t shortly thereafter).

    i don’t know the whys. i DO know it was indeed only one type of frog as sed (above) said

  3. Stephen@5: Do frogs ‘school’ as well? I’d imagine if i just scooped up a random slice of lake, i wouldn’t get all frogs.

  4. I’ve been following this for some time now. Articles about it have been in all the major english-language japanese papers available online.

    Not remotely explained by water spouts or the like, as the meteorologists have already determined there weren’t any.

    Basicly, the experts have no clue as to what the hell is going on.

  5. Some frogs have toxins, could have caused bird strangeness. Someone in Japan try licking one of the frog carcasses, tell us if you feel queasy or start seeing visions.

  6. You see, this was all the result of another incident with Godzilla. Due to the graphic nature, all mention of Godzilla and his activities have been forbidden from being publicized about. Instead, we only hear of the “tadpoles” raining from the sky.

  7. #6, rose bush:

    i know it’s possible i’ve been in it. i literally watched it rain tiny tiny tiny frogs.

    And did you catch any as they fell? Or see them in the air?

    The usual explanation in herpetological circles is that sudden rain will trigger mass exodus of frogs from pond edges. As this happens shortly after metamorphosis, some of these may still have vestigial tails (and hence could possibly be described as tadpoles). That doesn’t explain how they could end up on car roofs, though…

    (some photos would be nice)

  8. Certainly I can’t be the only one who immediately thought of Murakami’s novel “Kafka on the Shore”?

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