Global amphibian populations have been drastically declining for the past several decades. While different causes have been suspected for causing these declines, and often extinctions, of whole species, one of the greatest causes is a fungus, specifically belonging to the chytrid group of fungi.
The amphibians include a wide variety of animals living on every continent except for Antarctica. There are three large amphibian groups: nearly 6,000 species of frogs and toads, several hundred species of salamanders, and around 200 of the lesser known caecilians (limbless, worm-like amphibians that live only in tropical regions, in the water or underground). Amphibians lay their eggs in water, where water-breathing juveniles develop and become air-breathing adults.
Amphibians have been around for a long time: 350 million years. While many have become extinct over this time, the large number of species living today clearly indicates that they’ve been very successful at surviving and thriving in changing circumstances. However, they are now declining more than ever before.
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