Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

No Single Reason For Amphibian Decline

Date:
November 19, 1999
Source:
Ball State University
Summary:
The mystery surrounding the gradual disappearance of amphibians around the globe is baffling many scientists, says a Ball State University researcher. With a number of potential causes for the decline, there may be no single reason, said Mike Lannoo, a biology professor and coordinator of the U.S. Declining Amphibian Task Force.

MUNCIE, Ind. -- The mystery surrounding the gradual disappearance of amphibians around the globe is baffling many scientists, says a Ball State University researcher.

Related Articles


With a number of potential causes for the decline, there may be no single reason, said Mike Lannoo, a biology professor and coordinator of the U.S. Declining Amphibian Task Force.

"Certainly in every industrialized country, amphibian populations have been declining for some time," he said. "The question is if it is a slow or fast decline. It will take a great deal of research over time to determine that."

Declines are being blamed on various causes, including habitat destruction, chemical contamination, changes in the ozone layer, global warming, acid rain, parasites and viruses.

In many locations, some amphibian species are declining while other population groups seem to be stable. There also have been increased incidences of malformed frogs, including those with extra sets of eyes or legs, he said.

"I study an area in northwest Iowa and we've seen 30 deformed frogs over 20 years and that is probably because at one site the spring fed water is colder than it should be for proper development," Lannoo said. "Yet, at spots in Minnesota we are seeing upwards of 70 percent of the frogs malformed."

Malformations may not necessarily be blamed for declining populations, pointing out that deformities were discovered in pre-industrialized America, he said.

Lannoo said more research is needed because amphibian populations have increased and decreased regularly in recent history, making it difficult to determine a long-term trend.

"There are probably natural and non-natural causes for the population declines and subsequent malformations we are seeing," he said. "We have to do more research and weed out the various factors."

Lannoo, who has researched amphibians for more than a decade, believes that the loss of any animal species is a sign the environment is in poor shape.

"It is not good news to have fewer amphibians just like it is to have fewer manatee, beluga whales and other animals," Lanno said. "Some people argue that the loss of amphibians is an indicator of poor ecological health because amphibians live both on land and water.

"While some people label amphibians as a warning signal to humanity, I don't go that far because there has been no clear demonstrated links between amphibian declines and human disease," he said.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Ball State University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Ball State University. "No Single Reason For Amphibian Decline." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 November 1999. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/11/991119075426.htm>.
Ball State University. (1999, November 19). No Single Reason For Amphibian Decline. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 21, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/11/991119075426.htm
Ball State University. "No Single Reason For Amphibian Decline." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/11/991119075426.htm (accessed April 21, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deepwater And Dolphins: The Oil Spill's Impact 5 Years On

Deepwater And Dolphins: The Oil Spill's Impact 5 Years On

Newsy (Apr. 20, 2015) Five years on, the possible environmental impact of the Deepwater Horizon spill includes a sustained die-off of bottlenose dolphins, among others. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Five Years Later, the BP Oil Spill Is Still Taking Its Toll

Five Years Later, the BP Oil Spill Is Still Taking Its Toll

AFP (Apr. 20, 2015) On April 20, 2010, an explosion and fire on the Deepwater Horizon rig in the Gulf of Mexico started the biggest oil spill in US history. BP recently reported the Gulf is recovering well, but scientists paint a different picture. Duration: 02:36 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Thai Customs Seize African Elephant Tusks Worth $6 Mn

Thai Customs Seize African Elephant Tusks Worth $6 Mn

AFP (Apr. 20, 2015) Thai customs seize four tonnes of African elephant ivory worth $6 million at a Bangkok port in a container labelled as beans. Duration: 00:47 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Un-Bee-Lievable: Bees on the Loose After Washington Truck Crash

Un-Bee-Lievable: Bees on the Loose After Washington Truck Crash

Reuters - US Online Video (Apr. 17, 2015) A truck carrying honey bees overturns near Lynnwood, Washington, spreading boxes of live bees across the highway. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins