Chapter

Repercussions of Global Change

Jamie K. Reaser and Blaustein Andrew

in Amphibian Declines

Published by University of California Press

Published in print June 2005 | ISBN: 9780520235922
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520929432 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520235922.003.0011
Repercussions of Global Change

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Amphibians warrant substantial conservation attention. They are considered valuable indicators of environmental quality, and they have multiple functional roles in aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. As part of the overall “biodiversity crisis,” many amphibian populations have been declining and undergoing range reductions. Indeed, during the past decade, the amphibian decline issue has come to be regarded as an ecological emergency in progress. More than a dozen amphibian species are believed to have recently gone extinct, and the population ranges of many species have been dramatically reduced. Where amphibians are declining without apparent cause, it is difficult to arrest these population declines or to identify what the implications are for the rest of the biological community (including humans). Recent studies investigating site-specific cases of amphibian declines have revealed that global changes may be involved. Global warming, increases in ultraviolet radiation, and disease epidemics may all be driven by global phenomena. These global changes might be induced, at least in part, by the increasing intensity and extent of the human impact on climatic and ecological systems.

Keywords: population declines; amphibians; conservation; biodiversity crisis; global changes; global warming; ultraviolet radiation; disease epidemics

Chapter.  3241 words. 

Subjects: Zoology and Animal Sciences

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