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Sci Rep. 2013;3:1135. doi: 10.1038/srep01135. Epub 2013 Jan 24.

Terrestrial pesticide exposure of amphibians: an underestimated cause of global decline?

Author information

1
Institute for Environmental Sciences, University Koblenz-Landau, Landau, Germany. bruehl@unilandau.de

Abstract

Amphibians, a class of animals in global decline, are present in agricultural landscapes characterized by agrochemical inputs. Effects of pesticides on terrestrial life stages of amphibians such as juvenile and adult frogs, toads and newts are little understood and a specific risk assessment for pesticide exposure, mandatory for other vertebrate groups, is currently not conducted. We studied the effects of seven pesticide products on juvenile European common frogs (Rana temporaria) in an agricultural overspray scenario. Mortality ranged from 100% after one hour to 40% after seven days at the recommended label rate of currently registered products. The demonstrated toxicity is alarming and a large-scale negative effect of terrestrial pesticide exposure on amphibian populations seems likely. Terrestrial pesticide exposure might be underestimated as a driver of their decline calling for more attention in conservation efforts and the risk assessment procedures in place do not protect this vanishing animal group.

PMID:
23350038
PMCID:
PMC3553602
DOI:
10.1038/srep01135
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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