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Mohamed bin Zayed Species project number 12254621

Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation (Project No. 12254621) - Anamalai's frog - Awarded $12,000 on March 08, 2013

Project Overview
The Western Ghats is one of the 34 biodiversity hotspots in the world. Western Ghats houses three endemic families of anurans and is home to 157 species of amphibians constituted by 112 anuran species and 22 caecilian species. Out of the 112 species of anurans, 52 are threatened with very high risk of extinction (8 CR, 28 EN and 16 VU). In addition, there are 4 NT and 50 DD species of anurans. Presently, the major threats to Western Ghats and its aquatic systems is due to habitat destruction, mining, water pollution due to agricultural runoff. It is now established that the chytrid fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis) is present in a population of an Indian night frog (Nyctibatrachus sp.) in the Western Ghats. It is imperative to randomly test populations of freshwater frogs across the Western Ghats and develop conservation strategies to ensure survival of populations and species of endemic and threatened amphibians of the Western Ghats.

Project Objectives
(1)Training of interested amphibian researchers in chytrid field collection and testing protocols; (2)Field studies to collect species samples for chytrid testing; (3)Produce maps of chytridiomycosis incidence in the Western Ghats; (4)Develop conservation strategies for affected populations; (5)Outreach and awareness campaigns for forest departments, state and central ministries for implementation of conservation action in the wild; (6)Formulate a policy document with the Government of India on the import policy of exotic amphibians; and (7)Conducting education programs to public, aquarium traders and hobbyists on adverse effects of exotics as imports.

Interim Results
The project and funding has helped us to identify several areas positive for the chytrid fungus in the Western Ghats. Until now eight species of amphibians that are assessed show the presence of the fungus in some populations. Further sampling and laboratory work will establish the presence of the fungus.

 

 



Project 12254621 location - India, Asia