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Increasing Threat Of Extinction For Amphibians? Scientists To Seek Answers At NSF Workshop

May 15, 1998

Where have all the frogs, toads and salamanders gone? The world's leading researchers on amphibian declines will debate that question, and seek explanations for continuing downward trends of some amphibian populations, at a workshop sponsored by the National Science Foundation (NSF).

Loss of wetland habitat has reduced populations of frogs and toads, and endangered several species of amphibians with restricted ranges, scientists say. Alarming new events have added to this long-term trend, these researchers believe. Frog and toad populations have declined dramatically in the past several years, many in high-altitude locations in the western United States, and in Puerto Rico, Costa Rica, Panama, Columbia and Australia. Studies suggest that the declines may be caused by infections, perhaps promoted by environmental stressors such as synthetic organic compounds like pesticides, metallic contaminants, acid precipitation, UV-B radiation and increased temperatures.

These issues and some of the latest research on amphibians will be the subject of the NSF workshop. Experts from leading institutions in this field of biology will attempt to answer the question of whether there's any hope of rescuing the frogs, toads and salamanders of the world before it's too late.

What: Workshop on Amphibian Population Declines

Where: National Science Foundation (Exhibit Center, First Floor)
4201 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, Virginia (Ballston Metro Stop) For more information contact (media only): Cheryl Dybas, (703) 306-1070, cdybas@nsf.gov.

Note to television editors: Amphibian b-roll is available upon request. Call Dena Headlee at 1-888-937-5249.
-end-


National Science Foundation

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