The number of amphibian species are declining rapidly. On a worldwide scale almost a third of all species of toads and frogs are endangered or already extinct, and in Norway the pattern is more or less the same: Among the six occurring species one species, the pool frog (Pelophylax lessonae), is critically endangered.
The pool frog was first described in Norway as late as in 1986 and it has only been found in three small pools along the coastal region of Aust-Agder County. The number of individuals in the Norwegian population has steadily decreased and in 2017 the total population counted less than 50 (!) individuals, making the pool frog the most endangered vertebrate in Norway. Together with a known population in Sweden, this population constitutes a northern clade of the species. This clade is genetically distinct from the main population in Central Europe, and, although juveniles from this clade seem to be adapted to the cooler and shorter seasons in the north the population still seems to be mostly limited by summer and winter temperature – which has a great impact on reproduction and juvenile survival. However, we have limited knowledge and we need to close this knowledge gap quickly to save this species from extinction.
Together with The County Governor of Aust-Agder and Vest-Agder (Fylkesmannen i Aust-Agder and Vest-Agder) UiA is involved in a project that aims to use existing data, and collect new data, to better understand what the most important limiting factors are. Student projects will include field work and statistical analysis of already existing data on population
|Virksomhet:||Universitetet i Agder|
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