News of the WeekWildlife Biology

Fungus May Drive Frog Genocide

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Science  03 Jul 1998:
Vol. 281, Issue 5373, pp. 23
DOI: 10.1126/science.281.5373.23a

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Time and again, scientists have visited woods filled with frog song just 3 or 4 years earlier, only to find them frogless. Now, researchers have finally caught a killer in the act--a new fungus that has turned up in 120 frogs and toads of 12 species in Australia and seven species in Panama during mass die-offs in relatively pristine areas. Fourteen scientists from Australia, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Canada will describe the fungus--from the phylum Chytridiomycota--in the 21 July Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.