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If You're Traveling to Australia from Asia, Beware Stowaway Toads

An Indonesian toad's wild ride had an unhappy ending in Australia last week.

At Cairns Airport in the country's northeast, a sniffer dog brought a biosecurity officer's attention to a shoe being worn by a man who had just arrived from Indonesia.

Discovered inside the shoe was a dead black-spined toad. And get this: Officials believe that the stowaway amphibian had only recently died and was probably alive when the man put on the shoe before his flight.

Is it just us, or does this story raise as many questions as it answers?

In any case, Australia takes incidents like this very seriously, owing to the country's sensitive eco-system that can easily be harmed by invading species. And this isn't the only Asian toad found lately: Three Australian airports have reported unwanted visits from creatures originating in Thailand as well as Indonesia.

In response, the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources has issued a warning calling on anyone traveling to Australia from Asia to make sure they're not unwittingly carrying around toads in their luggage and other belongings. 

Evidently, only the motorcar-loving Mr. Toad in The Wind in the Willows can secure his own transportation. The rest of his kind have to hitch a ride.