August 5, 2013

Bat Disease Causing Fungus Found In State Park and more wildlife disease news


Pesticides Contaminating Critters in California's National Parks

Pesticides from California's valley farms are collecting in the tissues of a singing treefrog that lives in pristine national parks, including Yosemite and Giant Sequoia, a new study finds.

The chemicals include two fungicides never before found in wild frogs, said Kelly Smalling, lead study author and a U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) research hydrologist. The study was published today (July 26) in the journal Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry.

Live Science
26 Jul 2013
B Oskin

Cited Journal Article
Kelly L. Smalling et al. (2013) Accumulation of pesticides in pacific chorus frogs (Pseudacris regilla) from California's Sierra Nevada Mountains, USA. Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry. 2013 Sep; 32(9): 2026–2034. [Epub 2013 Jul 25]. DOI: 10.1002/etc.2308

Adapting to Stress: Early Exposure Gives Amphibians Higher Tolerance To Pesticides

... As amphibians continue their downward spiral, ecologists struggle to understand the animals’ responses to the likely agents of their destruction, including habitat loss or disturbance, disease, climate change and contaminants. It’s extremely difficult to tease apart which of these factors, acting alone or in combination, are driving declines in any one region.

But a recent study from the lab of aquatic ecologist Rick Relyea, a professor of ecology and evolution at the University of Pittsburgh, shines a small ray of light on a very dark picture. In an earlier study, Relyea found that glyphosate (otherwise known as Roundup), an herbicide widely used to control weeds in agriculture, killed 98% of tadpoles in his study within three weeks and 79% of juveniles in just one day. But pesticides can also cause defects without killing. Maybe stresses that don’t kill offer enough of a cushion for individuals to cope with the stress until more enduring adaptations can emerge in a population.

With more than 500 pest species now resistant to the insecticides used against them, Relyea reasoned, maybe frogs, and other unintentionally exposed species, could adapt to these chemicals over time too.

KQED Science
31 Jul 2013
L Gross

Cited Journal Article
Hua, J., Morehouse, N. I. and Relyea, R. (2013), Pesticide tolerance in amphibians: induced tolerance in susceptible populations, constitutive tolerance in tolerant populations. Evolutionary Applications. doi: 10.1111/eva.12083

Bat Disease Causing Fungus Found In State Park

Updated WNS map with suspect counties in Baxter and Washington counties, Arkansas
on 22 July 2013. Credit: Cal Butchkoski,PA Game Commission
The latest discovery of a fungus that causes White Nose Syndrome in bats has some Arkansas wildlife officials worried about the potential harm to local bat populations.

The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission confirmed Monday that a sample of the fungus was found in a cave at Devil's Den State Park in Washington County, but officials say no bats in the area have shown symptoms of the disease. It's the second instance of the fungus showing up in Arkansas after samples were found at a privately owned cave in Baxter County.

UALR Public Radio
29 Jul 2013
C Hickey
Location: View locations in Arkansas, USA on Disease News Map - Map It

Marine Mammal Health News
White-Nose Syndrome News
West Nile Virus News
Huh?! That's Interesting!

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