Researchers Detect Deadly Frog Fungus in Madagascar
An international team of amphibian experts including Museum curator Christopher Raxworthy has discovered that a fungus responsible for the precipitous decline of frog populations worldwide has now been detected in Madagascar.
In a paper published today in the journal Scientific Reports, the researchers document the detection of Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) in the island’s wild amphibians. The discovery is already spurring conservationists to action in Madagascar, which is home to about 7 percent of the world’s amphibian species.
“For many years, it appeared that Malagasy frogs had been living in a Bd fungus-free zone of the world, protected by the natural island isolation of Madagascar. However, our results now clearly show that this is not the case,” said Raxworthy, a co-author on the paper who helped collect the first frog specimens that tested positive for Bd, which causes the infectious amphibian disease chytridiomycosis.