Frogs feel the heat
A recent study by an international team across Australia and the US has some bad news for frogs – chytridiomycosis, a fungal skin disease caused by Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, decreases the amphibians’ tolerance for heat. Since frogs rely on external heat sources to control body temperature, they bask in the sun, behaviour that may help to kill parasites or improve their immune systems. As global temperatures rise due to climate change, infected frogs are more likely to feel the heat and avoid sunbathing, giving parasites like B. dendrobatidis a chance to thrive. The researchers at Florida suggest that this is an unexpected consequence of climate change, where the change in temperature and an emerging disease go hand-in-hand in driving many species of frog to extinction.