Can you solve the frog riddle?

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Wait wait wait a minute.

Why do you know all this about the magic frogs? Because you’re a highly-educated naturalist?

Then why did you eat the goddam poison mushroom?


Wait, doesn’t this only hold true if you can only lick ONE of the frogs? Because if you can lick both, you should still have a 50% chance of the non-confirmed male frog being female, right? Your sample space for licking both is reduced to two options because order doesn’t matter, I think.


The croak is actually bad news if you can lick both of the pair. With no croak, if you lick both frogs your chances of living would be 75% (only the male:male combo wouldn’t work). The croak eliminates one life saving option (2 females) so your odds are now just 67% provided you lick both frogs. But still better than the 50:50 of the single frog. I can’t help but think the puzzle should have been framed so that additional information non-intuitively led to a different choice.

I think this one is a bit mixed up. The puzzle should have you licking just one frog, no matter which direction you go. With no croak, it doesn’t matter which frog out of the three you lick. With the croak, you should avoid the pair and go for the single frog which is still 50:50 (even more so if croaking is common - the fact that it hasn’t croaked increases its chance of being female over time). The odds of survival of by licking one of the pair, now knowing there is no F:F combo is less than 50%.

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What if I ask the frog on the left, “if I asked the other frog its sex, what would it say?” Then, whichever one has a tiger inside, lick the other one.


I would go for the one on the tree stump. The two together are obviously males, still making the mating call because they’re both males and therefore still making calls in order to attract females (which they have not yet attracted) and they’re trying to get the attention of the only other frog in proximity, the female on the tree stump.

Unless we are to completely ignore the roots of behaviour in tree frogs (which our guy knows at least a little information about,) which I obviously know nothing about but these are live animals with behavioural drives and discounting that information in favour of a more simple, mathematical model should not be how you apply logic to the real world.


As per your observation above, anybody stupid enough to eat an unknown mushroom in a tropical forest is unlikely to be able to solve the probability problem before dying anyway.

Which reminds me of a story about Major Blashford-Snell, the explorer. On one of his expeditions into rainforest he took a (female) biologist who wanted to do some research. Second day in, she emerged from her tent in the morning wearing a bikini.
“I wouldn’t dress like that if I were you.” said Blashford-Snell.
“Oh,” she said, “I’m sure your soldiers can control themselves at the sight of a woman in a bikini”.
“I’m not worried about the men,” said Blashford-Snell, “it’s more the leeches that descend from the trees onto you”. Hasty cover-up ensued.
(The story is attested by his father, who incidentally kept two fox cubs as pets, looked after by a cat.)


What if the females of that species are loners, but the males congregate in groups?

So you take the rabbit to the island, because the fox won’t eat the cabbage.
Then you take the fox over to the island and row the rabbit back to the island.
Then you take the cabbage to the island, because the fox won’t eat the cabbage
Then you take the rabbit to the island.

Wait wrong puzzle! That was Fargo season 1.


But leeches don’t drop from trees. He must have been thinking of sheep…

In the unlikely event that I ever visit wet tropical rainforest, I’m going to be guided on this one by Blashford-Snell and organisations like Wild Madagascar. There are people online claiming leeches dropping from trees is a myth, and others saying that in wet rainforest this does indeed happen. Basically it depends on the wetness of the vegetation, and in Bélize this can be very wet indeed, as also in Madagascar.

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Then they would surely both be calling in competition.
Further analysis shows that you are right in that the male isn’t next to a female. It is presumably next to a gay male frog, which is why that one isn’t trying to attract females. The female on the other side of the clearing is not hopping over either because she’s homophobic or because she’s waiting for someone to give her an iPhone and a Tinder account.



In most frog species only the males croak. They croak to attract female frogs for breeding, and to warn away other male frogs from their territory. Female frogs think croaking is very sexy. Many kinds of frogs puff themselves up enormously with air when they croak.

I believe you’ve also made the mistake, among others, of committing the pathetic fallacy.


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um lick all the frogs at this point.

Ask the frog. If it answers, you’re already hallucinating and you’re probably beyond saving anyway.


No, Thylarctos plummetus, popularly know as the Dropbear


Female humans have thought me croacking would be very sexy prudent.



Well, the video misrepresents the experiment a bit to get what they’re doing past the ethics commission.
The experiment they are really doing is sending a bunch of morons (n = 100) into a rainforest one after the other, telling them to first eat a mushroom and then eat a frog in order to have a good time.
They have measured survival rates, so now they have confirmed the theory that going towards the two forgs after hearing a croak yields a 67% survival rate, unless the croak came from a hidden speaker, in which case the survival rate increases to 75%.

Now that this research is published, they are hoping to get funding for clinical trials. They’ll be installing hidden speakers playing various animal noises in hospitals to test the theory that synthetic croaking increases survival rates.


Your explanation is so cynical that it probably has a real world example.


The idea that the macrocosm and the microcosm are connected at a psychological level? I’m sure I’ve had many wrong ideas in the past and I’m currently being castigated elsewhere on BB for not believing that the problems of Ireland are caused by pure and unadulterated British imperial evil, but I think my post is sufficiently obvious a joke not to be an example of the fallacy. The example you post is, however, a gross example because it is purporting to be factual.