Research Projects

Conservation Projects

Education Projects

Global Projects

The Amphibian Survival Alliance envisions a world in which the extinction of known threatened species of amphibians has been prevented and their conservation status, particularly of those most in decline, has been improved and sustained. By focusing on amphibians, and the sites and habitats upon which they depend, we are working to improve the quality of life for amphibians, for other wildlife, and for people around the world.

The Global Amphibian BioBlitz (GAB) is citizen-science effort to harness amateur amphibian observations to enhance our understanding of the distribution and conservation status of amphibians globally.

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Launched in 2010, the Search for Lost Frogs sought to document the survival status and whereabouts of threatened amphibian species not seen in over a decade.

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North American Projects

North America has the most biodiverse community of salamanders in the world. But now a new species of chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans (Bsal) is threatening salamander species around the world; a fungus that may prove lethal for North American salamanders. All evidence currently available suggests that Bsal has not yet arrived in North America so our primary focus is to push forward policy actions and work with importers to keep it out. By working with groups like USARK and partners such as Josh’s Frogs we are exploring ways to connect researchers with large amphibian importers so that we can get a better sense of the current effectiveness of disease mitigation measures. Monitoring global amphibian diseases will become increasingly important and for that reason the Alliance is working on the development on an international disease-monitoring portal in cooperation with Alliance partner AmphibiaWeb.

United States

Establishing a salamander conservation fund that would support Bsal monitoring and surveillance efforts for early detection of Bsal in both captive and wild populations, with a particular emphasis on the salamanders of the Southern Appalachian region.

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United States

Wildlife diseases are a leading threat to biological diversity and ecosystem sustainability in the United States.  The goal of this project is the establishment of a collaborative Wildlife Health Initiative to address current wildlife health policy gaps.

Funded 30%
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United States

The Disappearing Frogs Project (DFP) was created In 2013 by Charlotte NC-based artist Terry Thirion. The concept is to bring synergy between artists and scientists to the public, communicating the unprecedented global amphibian decline and potential effects of species extinction.

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United States

Over the past 30–100 years amphibians have experienced worldwide population declines. With a staggering 32% of the Earth’s amphibian species facing imminent decline, the use of captive breeding has emerged to prevent extinction.

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Mexico

Amphibians in Nayarit, western Mexico, have been little studied. Three years ago I started a project to understand the amphibian diversity and collect both biological and ecological data of its species. During the fieldwork in rural communities (some of them have a high percentage of indigenous people) I spoke with local people about amphibians, showing pictures for visual identification and asking them about their common names, etc.

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Arizona

According to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, more amphibians are threatened with extinction than any other group of vertebrates. Recent evidence indicates our planet is in the midst of a sixth mass extinction event and estimates of amphibian extinction rates are over 200 times greater than historic rates.

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Central American Projects

The forests of Central America brim with some of the most colorful amphibians in the world – from Red-eyed treefrogs to poison dart frogs and harlequin frogs – and salamanders found nowhere else. Many people in Central America recognize the importance of conservation. Costa Rica places a high priority on protecting natural resources, making it one of the greenest and happiest places in the world. In Guatemala, ASA partners FUNDAECO have achieved the protection of the Sierra Caral mountain range, home to myriad species that are threatened and found nowhere else. The remote mountains of Guatemala are home to many unique salamanders – we hope to build upon the success of the Sierra Caral to keep these species in the wild.

Guatemala

The Sierra de los Cuchumatanes in north-western Guatemala is the highest non-volcanic range in Central America, and a hotbed of unique and threatened amphibians including the Finca Chiblac Salamander, Long-limbed Salamander, Jackson’s Climbing Salamander and the Critically Endangered and beautiful Morelett’s Black-eyed Treefrog.

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Guatemala

Guatemala’s National Congress created the Sierra Caral National Protected Area on May 13, making it the nation’s first federally protected area to be established in seven years.

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Honduras

The rescue efforts established by HARCC will prevent the extinction of three critically endangered amphibian species by performing a head-start program to quickly raise amphibians for reintroduction while simultaneously creating captive assurance populations for long-term protection against extinction.

24%
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Costa Rica, Panama, Peru

Amphibian declines and disappearances have long captured our attention, but in recent years there have been numerous reports of once “lost” amphibians being rediscovered. Many of these amphibians are from populations or species that are believed to have declined due to Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd).

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Caribbean Projects

We all know the Caribbean for its turquoise seas and white sands, but those islands are also home to some incredible amphibians. Haiti, a place that is not often associated with positive stories, is a true amphibian hot spot, ranking among the top three sites in the world with threatened and endemic species according to the Alliance for Zero Extinction. It also has the highest proportion of threatened species, with more than nine out of every 10 species listed as threatened by the IUCN. Working with local partners Societe Audubon Haiti, we are looking to establish the first ever system of private protected areas in the country to safeguard some of the most critical amphibian habitat before it is too late.

British Virgin Islands

Jost Van Dyke is a 3.5 square mile island located in the British Virgin Islands. It is home to (5) documented native frog species, including two endangered species, Eleutherodactylus schwartzi and Eleutherodactylus lentus. The Virgin Islands Coqui Frog (Eleutherodacylus schwartzi) is a little known species, found only in the British Virgin Islands, and is believed to be extirpated from the neighboring U.S. Virgin Islands.

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South American Projects

South America boasts the country with the most amphibian species (Brazil), the country with the most threatened amphibian species (Colombia), and the most “frog-diverse” country – that is, the country with the most amphibian species per unit area (Ecuador). It also boasts some of the highest numbers of amphibian biologists, and our understanding of the amphibian fauna of this region is therefore relatively good when compared with other regions. ASA partner Fundacion ProAves has established half a dozen reserves for threatened amphibians in Colombia, including the first private reserve that we know of established for amphibians. Most recently, ASA has supported local partners Jocotoco establish a new reserve for three endemic amphibians in Ecuador, and we are working with partners Instituto Uiraçu in Brazil to help protect the home of the Flea Toad.

Ecuador

Ecuador is one of the most important countries of the world for research and conservation of amphibians because of its exceptional diversity and high levels of endemism (527 species of amphibians described, plus about 200–250 species awaiting descriptions, 207 endemic species, 41% of endemism).

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Ecuador

The Quito Rocket Frog, Hyloxalus jacobuspetersi, is a Critically Endangered species from the Ecuadorian Andes. It had a wide distribution in the central and northern Andes of Ecuador and was once locally abundant at several sites including the city of Quito.

Funded 24%
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Ecuador

A consortium of partners including the Amphibian Survival Alliance, Rainforest Trust, Global Wildlife Conservation, Andrew Sabin Family Foundation and American Bird Conservancy have joined forces to enable local partner Fundación Jocotoco to purchase 6,100 acres of critical wildlife habitat in Ecuador, bringing the total area protected by this group to approximately 270,000 acres.

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Colombia

A coalition of conservation groups, including Rainforest Trust, Global Wildlife Conservation (GWC), Amphibian Survival Alliance and local partners ProAves, has established the Chamicero de Perijá Nature Reserve, the first protected area in northern Colombia’s Serranía de Perijá mountain range.

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Peru

The species of the family Telmatobiidae are endemic from South American Andes, they are distributed from central Chile to northern Ecuador, through Bolivia and Peru, above 2600 m.a.s.l. these frogs inhabit wetlands ecosystem of páramos and Andean subparamos and also dry and wet puna. 61 species are recognized In South America and 25 of these are distributed in Peru.

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Trinidad

The extraction and identification of DNA from environmental samples (eDNA) has recently shown great potential for the monitoring of endangered and elusive species. The endemic Trindad Golden Frog (Phytotriades auratus) is considered critically endangered based on its restricted geographical range and decline of its habitat.

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Colombia

telopus genus seem to be facing the greatest population declines and largest number of extinctions in Colombia. Of the 37Atelopus species currently known in Colombia, 31 are critically endangered and some of these are likely extinct. Information on the conservation status of species dwelling in other regions, such as the pacific lowlands, is scarce.

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Brazil

The Flea Toad (Brachycephalus pulex) is a new species to science that, when it was described in 2011, was the smallest amphibian (and the smallest tetrapod) in the world at between 8 and 8.4 mm long when fully grown.

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Venezuela

Venezuela is recognized as a megadiverse country. With 363 species of amphibians —about 5% of the global total— it is among the top ten continental territories with the greatest diversity in this group of vertebrates.

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Argentina

The project is part of a conservation program focused in the long term preservation of the three species of marsupial frogs of Yungas Andean forest of Northwestern Argentina. Particularly, concern for the conservation status of Calilegua’s Marsupial Frog (Gastrotheca christiani) arises not only due to the sudden lack of registries in the wild since 1996, but also by evidences of a severe population decline.

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European, North African, and West African Projects

Portugal

Amphibian natural populations are strongly affected by pathogenic agents. The risk of disease is dependent on the pathogen environmental conditions, capacity of infection and the host’s susceptibility to disease. Changing the environment, in which amphibians thrive, modifies the distribution, increases the risk for diseases transmission and even affects the ecology of populations.

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Algeria

Algeria has a key location as a biogeographical contact area between the Maghreb and Europe, however data about the ecology of Algerian amphibians remain very scarce. In this country, several genus of mesophilous amphibians show an endemic and a restricted distribution, among them Salamandra algira and Pleurodeles poireti.

Funded 100%
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Sub-Sarahan Africa Projects

The amphibians of the Sub-Saharan Africa are facing an ever-growing array of threats. In Madagascar alone for example, we are seeing new threats from infectious diseases and even invasive species.  Coupled with limited regional capacity, this makes addressing these threats incredibly challenging. However there are people fighting back all over this region. ASA partners such as Herp Ghana and The Reptile and Amphibian Program—Sierra Leone are building support for amphibians in West Africa while the Endangered Wildlife Trust recently launched a program dedicated to conserving amphibians. And the global community is coming together in Madagascar under the guidance of local authorities to take real meaningful action to protect the amazing amphibian diversity of this region long into the future.

Madagascar

The Asian or Black-spined Toad (Duttaphrynus melanostictus) has all the makings of a classic bad guy. Considered one of the most successful amphibians at wreaking havoc in habitat where it doesn’t belong, this invasive species is best known for causing severe ecological issues in Australia.The Asian Toad’s latest target? Madagascar, where native species may be threatened by predation, competition for resources, or the toad’s natural defensive toxins.

Funded 10%
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South Africa

The Critically Endangered Amathole Toad, Vandijkophrynus amatolicus, is one of South Africa’s rarest frogs. Having disappeared for 13 years between 1998 and 2011, the species made it onto the IUCN’s Lost Frog search campaign list in 2010. Despite a concerted search effort in August of that year (and in years prior), the toad remained AWOL and rumors of its extinction emerged.

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Madagascar

Until recently Madagascar was one of the few places on Earth where the chytrid fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, Bd) hadn’t been detected. Sadly, there is now a report of Bd being detected on amphibians in Madagascar.

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Madagascar

After a five-year effort, some of Madagascar’s rarest amphibian and reptile species have received protection within the newly created Ankaratra Massif Reserve. The Madagascan conservation organization Association Vondrona Ivon’ny Fampandrosoanavif (VIF) established the reserve with the support of its U.S. partners Amphibian Survival Alliance, Global Wildlife Conservation and Rainforest Trust.

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Madagascar

Sometimes, a true conservation leader emerges where they are needed most. Julie Hanta Razafimanahaka has recently emerged as a truly inspirational figure leading the charge to protect some of Madagascar’s richest forests and the species that call them home, with boundless energy and enthusiasm for her mission.

Funded 100%
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Madagascar

The frogs of Madagascar are one of the richest groups of amphibians in the world with currently around 290 described anuran species. Madagascar ranks 12th in the world for amphibian species richness, but this is likely an underestimate, due to the many species still being discovered and identified.

Funded 100%
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South Africa

The Amphibian Conservation Research Symposium (ACRS) is the only international symposium dedicated specifically to the sharing of research and strategies to empower the future of amphibian conservation. ACRS helps to bring together amphibian conservationists and researchers from around the world to gain experience, learn new ideas and make contacts.

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Cameroon

The Highlands of Cameroon holds a vast diversity of amphibians, many of which have small ranges on one to a handful of mountaintops. These latter species are typically therefore assessed to be threatened with extinction. In recent years, on particular mountains currently being monitored, there have been disappearances of amphibian species that have not been explained.

Funded 100%
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Kenya

Kitobo forest is a ground water forest located about 10 km South-East of Taveta town in the Taita- Taveta County, Coast Province, Kenya. It is approximately 250 km inland from the coast and on the extreme lowland North-East of the Tanzanian Eastern Arc Mountain block of North Pare Mountains near the Kenya-Tanzania border.

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Tanzania

With 41% of all species threatened, no other major group has a greater proportion of species at risk of extinction than the world’s amphibians. Forest amphibians are especially sensitive to habitat degradation and those species with very narrow distributions are even more likely than others to disappear from our planet if their environments vanish..

Funded 100%
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Cameroon

There’s no doubt that the goliath frog is aptly named. The species is the largest frog in the world, reaching up to 12.5 inches in length and 7.2 pounds in weight.

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Maritime South East Asia and Oceania Projects

The predominant threat to the survival of many amphibians in South East Asia is the rampant loss of forest habitat. We are working to address this threat by supporting local partners working to protect key tracts of habitat. The Alliance for Tompotika Conservation have been working to protect some critical habitat – home to at least two new species of frogs – in Sulawesi. In Palawan, the most forested island of the Philippines, we are currently working with local partners the Center for Sustainability to create a new Reserve for three threatened amphibian species around Cleopatra’s Needle. We hope to replicate these successes elsewhere in the region to empower local groups to protect key habitats for amphibians.

Philippines

The lush island province of Palawan is a last frontier for conservation in the Philippines. The island boasts half of its original primary forests, some of the oldest and most diverse in Southeast Asia, and was identified in a November 2013 study published in Science, as the world’s fourth most “irreplaceable” area for unique and threatened wildlife.

Funded 100%
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Borneo

The Amphibian Survival Alliance recently supported an appeal by the World Land Trust to raise $1.7 million to enable local partners HUTAN to purchase and protect critical rainforest habitat in the Lower Kinabatangan floodplain of Sabah, Borneo.

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Sulawesi

Mount Tompotika is a 1,600m forested mountain on the extreme eastern tip of Central Sulawesi, Indonesia. Considered a sacred place of origin for all three of the ethnic groups indigenous to the area, the mountain forms the center and focal point of the Tompotika peninsula.

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