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Amphibian loss and rescue measures: exchange of views in Science

December 18, 2006

Amphibian loss and rescue measures: exchange of views in Science

The Science issue of December 8 (314: 1541) published the letter “Responding to amphibian loss” by J. Alan Pounds from Monteverde

The Science issue of December 8 (314: 1541) published the letter “Responding to amphibian loss” by J. Alan Pounds from Monteverde, Costa Rica and collaborators, suggesting that on-going rescue measures and the creation of centers for captive breeding to combat the chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatis (Bd) are oversold, and constitute “...no substitute for putting the Earth on a safe path.” An example of these efforts is a project at El Valle, carried out with the support of STRI and other national and international institutions.

Responding to Pounds et al. in the same issue of Science is a group of scientists including STRI visiting scholar Joseph R. Mendelson III and research associates Karen R. Lips and Roberto Ibáñez. This latest group, all signatories of The Amphibian Conservation Action Plan (ACAP) that “reflects the need for a global, comprehensive response to amphibian extinctions...” defend the position of the rescue measures, since, according to them “dealing with both the proximate and ultimate causes of amphibian extinctions is the most effective strategy.”

The articles were distributed by Neal G. Smith on December 7th. They can also be obtained from calderom@si.edu

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