Scientists Call For Ban On Imported Salamanders

The main carriers of the fungus are believed to be the Tam Dao or Vietnamese salamander, a.k.a. Paramesotriton deloustali, the blue tailed fire bellied newt, a.k.a. Cynops cyanurus and the Japanese fire belied newt, also known as Cynops pyrrhogaster. It could hurt populations within the United States and in North America, which accounts for the world’s 48 per cent of the 676 salamander species. Among are those believed to be the most vulnerable to the fungus. The new chytrid fungus already spread from Asia to Europe is now expected to threaten the salamander species in North America. Since Bsal is incurable, Vrendenburg and his colleges at Francisco State University are calling for US Fish and Wildlife Service to put an immediate ban on live salamander import. It’s an acute infection that horribly deems the salamanders into nothing but little masses of slime within three or four days.

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“This is an imminent threat, and a place where policy could have a very positive effect”, said study coauthor Vance Vredenburg, a biologist at San Francisco State University, in a statement.

The Center for Biological Diversity initiated an online petition in May to institute a ban, which is supported by key scientists, but the federal government has been slow to act.

Together with other colleagues, Vredenburg is asking the US Fish and Wildlife Service to prohibit the importation of live salamanders into the US immediately. “We actually have a decent chance of preventing a major catastrophe”. Doc?id=3396″ >species richness, the researchers identified three zones that were at high risk for Bsal infection: “the Southeast near the southern end of the Appalachian Mountains, the Pacific Northwest and the Sierra Nevada, and the highlands in Central Mexico. While still unknown, scientists point to a similar fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatitidis (more simply claled Bd), that, since 1999, has been responsible for wiping out over 200 species of amphibians around the world. The fungus, called Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans or Bsal, kills nearly every salamander it infects.

From 2010 to 2014 there have been 419.890 salamanders imported in Los Angeles alone.

A paper describing the potential effects of the fungus on U.S. and Mexican salamanders will appear in the July 31 issue of the journal Science. There is a ray of hope, he added. “With Bd, no one could even imagine that one pathogen could cause so much damage across all these different species because we had never seen anything like that before”, he said.

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Based linked to new scientific studies, it is essential that often salamander imports will have to be quit due to the fact that a harmful yeast eradicates just about any salamander the item arrives communicate with to. Unfortunately, these species are very vulnerable to Bsal.

Ban on salamander imports could fend off deadly fungus