Microhabitat temperatures and prevalence of the pathogenic fungus batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in lowland amazonian frogs

von May, Rudolf, Catenazzi, Alessandro, Santa-Cruz, Roy, Kosch, Tiffany A., and Vredenburg, Vance T. (2018) Microhabitat temperatures and prevalence of the pathogenic fungus batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in lowland amazonian frogs. Tropical Conservation Science, 11.

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Until recently, it was assumed that the pathogenic fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) was not widely distributed in warm ecosystems such as lowland tropical rainforests because high environmental temperatures limit its growth. However, several studies have documented Bd infection in lowland rainforest amphibians over the past decade. In addition, a recent study focusing on museum-stored specimens showed that Bd has been present in the lowland Amazon for more than 80 years. These findings lent support to the idea that some lowland rainforest habitats offer suitable environmental conditions for Bd growth, even though most lowland areas may contain suboptimal conditions limiting the pathogen spread and growth. Here, we surveyed four sites in southeast Peru to examine the prevalence and the intensity of infection of Bd in lowland Amazonian amphibians and to fill a gap between two areas where Bd has been present for more than a decade. In one of these “hotspots” of Bd infection, the upper slopes of Manu National Park, several species experienced population declines attributed to Bd epizootics over the past 15 years. We also examined the thermal profile of the main microhabitats used by lowland Amazonian frogs to infer whether these microhabitats offer suitable thermal conditions for Bd growth. We detected Bd in nine lowland frog species and variation in prevalence of infection across years. Our findings suggest that the temperatures in the leaf litter and understory vegetation of some habitats offer suitable conditions for Bd growth.

Item ID: 55690
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1940-0829
Keywords: chytridiomycosis, emerging infectious disease, frogs, HOBO temperature data loggers, iButton, lowland tropical rainforest
Copyright Information: Copyright © The Author(s) 2018. Creative Commons Non Commercial CC BY-NC: This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 License (http://www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/) which permits non-commercial use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access pages (https://us.sagepub.com/en-us/nam/open-access-at-sage).
Funders: National Science Foundation (NSF), American Philosophical Society, National Geographic Society (NGS), Amazon Conservation Association, Amphibian Specialist Group, Disney Wildlife Conservation Fund
Projects and Grants: NSF DBI-1103087, NGS Grant No. 9191–12, NSF 1120283
Date Deposited: 25 Sep 2018 23:47
FoR Codes: 31 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 3107 Microbiology > 310703 Microbial ecology @ 40%
31 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 3107 Microbiology > 310705 Mycology @ 20%
31 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 3104 Evolutionary biology > 310402 Biogeography and phylogeography @ 40%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9608 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity > 960806 Forest and Woodlands Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity @ 40%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970106 Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences @ 40%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9604 Control of Pests, Diseases and Exotic Species > 960499 Control of Pests, Diseases and Exotic Species not elsewhere classified @ 20%
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