The Javan Tree Frog is endangered.
The Javan Tree Frog is endangered.

Scientists Ring Alarm for Amphibians

A big report shows amphibians are facing extinction.

Ribbit. Ribbit.

Frog croaks join together in a loud summer song. But around the world, those sounds are growing rarer. A group of scientists announced that many frogs and other species are disappearing.

have been studying plant and animal numbers for a long time. Most experts agree that the world is in a mass event. That means many species are disappearing. The last time a mass extinction happened was 66 million years ago. That’s when the dinosaurs were wiped out.

Now, amphibians are among the animals most at risk. A group of 123 scientists released a report on October 4. According to their global study, almost half of all amphibian species are under threat.

The scientists looked at 8,011 species for the report. They explained that 222 amphibian species may have gone extinct over the last 150 years. In the past, the main causes of these extinctions were disease and . But recently, the threat of climate change has grown. In the last 20 years, warming temperatures caused almost half of the species loss.

In places like Australia and Brazil, experts think that less rain will hurt frogs’ chances of having babies. In Venezuela, amphibians in the Guiana Highlands must climb higher into the mountains. Up there, the creatures can stay in cooler temperatures. And in the United states, fires and changes in soil are already hurting five salamander species.

Saving amphibians matters for everyone — not just people who love the animals. Scientists use amphibians to study medicines. The creatures also help control insect populations by eating bugs. For example, a disease called malaria spreads through mosquitoes. A mosquito-eating frog species in South America began to die off in the 1980s. This caused cases of malaria to increase in the area.

The team of scientists warned that the full effects of climate change on amphibians is probably even bigger than they know. However, there is hope. This information will give experts new tools to help save amphibians.

Keeping track of species’ populations lets scientists know if amphibians are struggling or not. This gives them a chance to step in and help where amphibians need them the most. So, while there are still many problems to solve, the researchers’ work helps scientists focus their efforts.

And hopefully, the world’s amphibians are hopping to a happier future.

Updated October 16, 2023, 5:03 P.M. (ET)
By Hannah Marcum

Scientists Ring Alarm for Amphibians

A big report shows amphibians are facing extinction.

The Javan Tree Frog is endangered.
The Javan Tree Frog is endangered.

Ribbit. Ribbit.

Frog croaks join together in a loud summer song. But around the world, those sounds are growing rarer. A group of scientists announced that many frogs and other species are disappearing.

have been studying plant and animal numbers for a long time. Most experts agree that the world is in a mass event. That means many species are disappearing. The last time a mass extinction happened was 66 million years ago. That’s when the dinosaurs were wiped out.

Now, amphibians are among the animals most at risk. A group of 123 scientists released a report on October 4. According to their global study, almost half of all amphibian species are under threat.

The scientists looked at 8,011 species for the report. They explained that 222 amphibian species may have gone extinct over the last 150 years. In the past, the main causes of these extinctions were disease and . But recently, the threat of climate change has grown. In the last 20 years, warming temperatures caused almost half of the species loss.

In places like Australia and Brazil, experts think that less rain will hurt frogs’ chances of having babies. In Venezuela, amphibians in the Guiana Highlands must climb higher into the mountains. Up there, the creatures can stay in cooler temperatures. And in the United states, fires and changes in soil are already hurting five salamander species.

Saving amphibians matters for everyone — not just people who love the animals. Scientists use amphibians to study medicines. The creatures also help control insect populations by eating bugs. For example, a disease called malaria spreads through mosquitoes. A mosquito-eating frog species in South America began to die off in the 1980s. This caused cases of malaria to increase in the area.

The team of scientists warned that the full effects of climate change on amphibians is probably even bigger than they know. However, there is hope. This information will give experts new tools to help save amphibians.

Keeping track of species’ populations lets scientists know if amphibians are struggling or not. This gives them a chance to step in and help where amphibians need them the most. So, while there are still many problems to solve, the researchers’ work helps scientists focus their efforts.

And hopefully, the world’s amphibians are hopping to a happier future.

Updated October 16, 2023, 5:03 P.M. (ET)
By Hannah Marcum

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