AmphibiaWeb provides information on amphibian declines, natural history, conservation, and taxonomy.

Species of the Week:
Andrias japonicus

Amphibian News
The loss of a species' genetic distinctness via hybridization is a conservation concern sometimes difficult to identify and further impeded when the organisms are secretive and with low population numbers. Fukumoto et al (2015) recently overcame this problem by using environmental DNA, specifically DNA found in water samples, to determine the extent of hybridization between the threatened native Japanese Giant Salamander, Andrias japonicas, and invasive Chinese Giant Salamander, Andrias davidianus. After surveying 37 sites across the Katsura River Basin in Japan, they found 9 sites with exotic DNA, including sites that traditional methods excluded from having invasives. The authors recommend environmental DNA methods for monitoring the spread of hybridization in conjunction with traditional catch and release methods to provide a fuller picture for conservation efforts.

Current number of amphibian species: 7,416 (May 25, 2015) Newly added species