Chytrid infection and post-release fitness in the reintroduction of an endangered alpine tree frog
LA Brannelly, DA Hunter, LF Skerratt, BC Scheele, D Lenger, MS McFadden, PS Harlow, L Berger
ANIMAL CONSERVATION | WILEY | Published : 2016
Global amphibian decline and extinction has been associated with the spread of the pathogenic chytrid fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis,Bd). Despite extensive research, there have been no examples of effective management abating the ongoing impact of this pathogen in the wild. The endangered alpine tree frog (Litoria verreauxii alpina) has been extirpated from 80% of its former range because of Bd. We directly tested whether source population or host site influenced the efficacy of a reintroduction of L.v.alpina. We captive reared and released 1241 individuals from three different populations, two with a history of Bd exposure and one that was Bd-naïve, into two sites where they had his..View full abstract
Awarded by Australian Research Council
We thank C. Scheele, A. Fletcher and T. Fletcher for field assistance, R. Webb and C. Larsson for help with marking the animals, L. Grogan and S. Cashins for troubleshooting. V. Eldridge, T. Swain, R. O'Neill, R. Mouat, SnowyHydro and NPWS, who provided accommodation in the field. We thank Taronga Zoo employees and volunteers for captive rearing the animals. The project was funded by the Australian Research Council (grants FT100100375, LP110200240) and Taronga Zoo. Ethics approval has been granted by James Cook University for application A1880.