- Alessandro Catenazzi, AmphibiaWeb Steering Committee
- John Deck, Berkeley Natural History Museums Developer, FIMS and GEOME architect
- Philip Kahn, Applications Developer, original architect
- Vance Vredenburg, AmphibiaWeb Steering Committee
- David Wake, AmphibiaWeb director
- Tiffany Yap, Conservation Biologist* (also the photographer of the home page image!)
- A brief introduction to Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans (Bsal) and the threat to southeastern taxa (Apodaca)
- First Steps Toward a National Strategic Plan for Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans (Gray)
- Averting a biodiversity crisis (Koo)
Motivated by the decline of amphibians globally and the growing understanding of diseases as major factors, AmphibiaWeb and the US Forest Service are collaborating to develop a community-based, online repository and resource for data on the major infectious disease impacting global amphibian declines, chytridiomycosis. Our mission is to aggregate, visualize and share data from the community of active researchers archiving their completed and in progress datasets from laboratory experiments and field sites around the world.
The amphibian fungal disease chytridiomycosis, caused by the fungal pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) has caused the extinction of hundreds of amphibian species globally over the last few decades. In addition, a newly described fungal pathogen, B. salamandrivorans (Bsal), thought to have evolved in Asia and recently introduced to Europe, has caused mass die-offs in native European salamanders (Martel et al 2013). Our ability to predict outbreaks caused by these pathogenic fungi is poor. To help understand and predict these phenomena we are creating a globally accessible site for aggregating information from tested samples (Bd and Bsal) including interactive visualization of these data and the on-going activities of participants.
In this rapidly developing area of science, making information more quickly and readily available will enable the scientific community to test and build predictive models more efficiently. Making data readily available should facilitate both research and management/ conservation decisions. We aim to be a repository for Bd and Bsal data from field and biocollection samples. Only by the community coming together to aggregate data will we be able to understand the disease dynamics of this major cause of amphibian declines worldwide.
This project launched with seed funding from the USDA Forest Service (Dede Olson, Pacific Northwest Research Station) and AmphibiaWeb (Michelle Koo, Museum of Vertebrate Zoology), who both head the North American Bsal Task Force Data Management Team. Read more about the Bsal Task Force here. Development was guided and shaped with input from the Bsal Task Force, particularly the Surveillance and Monitoring Group.
Other individuals critical to the initial portal’s development (alphabetically):
AmphibiaWeb: Chytridiomycosis: https://amphibiaweb.org/chytrid/chytridiomycosis.html
Bsal Task Force: http://www.salamanderfungus.org/
Bsal Task Force presentations:
Martel, A., Ppitzen-van der Slulis, A., Blooi, M., Bert, W., Ducatelle, R., Fisher, M.C., Woeltjes, A., Bosman, W., Chiers, K., Bossuyt, F., and Pasmans, F. (2013). Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans sp. nov. causes chytridiomicosis in amphibians. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 110(38), 15325–15329.