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Long-term monitoring of an amphibian community after a climate change- and infectious disease-driven species extirpation

Bosch, J; Fernández-Beaskoetxea, S; Garner, TWJ; Carrascal, LM; (2018) Long-term monitoring of an amphibian community after a climate change- and infectious disease-driven species extirpation. Global Change Biology , 24 (6) pp. 2622-2632. 10.1111/gcb.14092. Green open access

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Abstract

Infectious disease and climate change are considered major threats to biodiversity and act as drivers behind the global amphibian decline. This is to a large extent based on short term studies that are designed to detect the immediate and strongest biodiversity responses to a threatening process. What few long term studies are available, although typically focussed on single species, report outcomes that often diverge significantly from the short term species responses. Here we report the results of an 18 year survey of an amphibian community exposed to both climate warming and the emergence of lethal chytridiomycosis. Our study shows that the impacts of infectious disease is ongoing but restricted to two out of nine species that form the community, despite the fact all species can become infected with the fungus. Climate warming appears to be affecting four out of the nine species, but the response of three of these is an increase in abundance. Our study supports a decreasing role of infectious disease on the community, and an increasing and currently positive effect of climate warming. We caution that if the warming trends continue, the net positive effect will turn negative as amphibian breeding habitat becomes unavailable as water bodies dry, a pattern that already may be underway.

Type: Article
Title: Long-term monitoring of an amphibian community after a climate change- and infectious disease-driven species extirpation
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1111/gcb.14092
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/gcb.14092
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: wildlife diseases; chytridiomycosis; climate change; global amphibian declines; amphibian monitoring
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences > Genetics, Evolution and Environment
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10043836
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