Scientists Link Amphibian Fungus to Increasing Temperature Range
The rapid worldwide emergence of the amphibian pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, the amphibian chytrid fungus, is having a profound negative affect on biodiversity. The amphibian chytrid fungus has been reported in 52 of 82 countries sampled to date, and in 516 of 1,240 species. After analyzing these data, scientists found that the disease is associated with species richness, and the occurrence of previously reported unexplained amphibian declines at sites. They found the odds of occurrence decreased with increasing temperature range at a site, linking disease emergence to climatic considerations. The global data set is helping to inform surveillance efforts, decontamination priorities, risks of water and animal transport, and amphibian conservation objectives. The project has led to a more rapid cycle of science development, science networking, results reporting, and management impact at the global scale. The data have been used to inform the World Organization for Animal Health - for disease listing, and amphibian trade policy in the United States and elsewhere. Regionally, Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management fire managers have used the data to plan water draws for firefighting.
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