Science Center Objects

Disease is a major threat facing amphibian and reptile populations around the world. Our research addresses interactions between pathogens, the environment, and hosts to better understand ways to prevent the spread of disease.

We are active in the Amphibian Research and Monitoring Initiative (ARMI) national surveillance effort for the emerging pathogen Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans (Bsal; salamander chytrid). Bsal is responsible for salamander die-offs in Europe. The United States hosts the highest salamander richness in the world and any future introduction of Bsal could threaten an array of native species. We conduct diagnostic sampling of at-risk amphibian populations to monitor for the presence of Bsal and the closely-related Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd). ARMI and collaborators including the Bsal Task Force have developed tools to target and rapidly respond to Bsal if detected in the United States.

 

amphibian research at pond

USGS scientists conduct research on amphibian populations to monitor ecological concerns and management.

(Credit: Brome McCreary. Free to use with credit to Brome McCreary; Ask permission before altering photo.)