Understanding the impacts of chytrid fungus on the population biology of the motorbike frog Litoria moorei, a non-declining bell frog.
In 2017, 42% of global amphibian species (n=2067) were assessed as threatened and in decline, making amphibians the most threatened class of vertebrate (Baillie, Griffiths, Turvey, Loh, & Collen, 2010; IUCN Red List, 2017). Multiple factors are linked to population decline and globally habitat loss is regarded as the leading cause (Cushman, 2006; Stuart et al., 2004; Swanson et al., 2019). Disease is another major driver of amphibian declines and, chytridiomycosis is a primary cause of observed rapid declines, particularly in tropical areas (Scheele et al., 2019). Large bodied anurans have been the most significantly affected by chytrid, especially in Australia and America (Scheele et al., 2019). In Australia, the bell frog group is of interest with two species in decline in eastern Australia and are often uncommon in urban areas (Heard, Robertson, & Scroggie, 2006; Skerratt et al., 2016). In contrast, in south west Western Australia the bell frog Litoria moorei (Motorbike frog) is relatively common despite exposure to similar threats. My study aims to investigate the population dynamics of motorbike frogs to better understand the impacts of chytrid fungus on this species. Improving our understanding can better inform management decisions for both the motorbike frog and the threatened bell frogs in eastern Australia.
Bachelor of Science (Biological Sciences), Edith Cowan University (2014-2017).
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