Potential interactions among disease, pesticides, water quality and adjacent land cover in amphibian habitats in the US

To investigate interactions among disease, pesticides, water quality, and adjacent land cover, we collected samples of water, sediment, and frog tissue from 21 sites in 7 States in the United States (US) representing a variety of amphibian habitats. All samples were analyzed for >90 pesticides and pesticide degradates, and water and frogs were screened for the amphibian chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) using molecular methods. Pesticides and pesticide degradates were detected frequently in frog breeding habitats (water and sediment) as well as in frog tissue.

Petition to give Venus Flytrap endangered species protection

University of Wisconsin-Madison ecologists have played a key role in a petition filed with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Friday seeking emergency Endangered Species Act protection for the Venus flytrap (Dionaea muscipula). The petition was written and signed by a national group of experts in conservation and ecology, including Waller and Tom Gibson of UW-Madison. The unique carnivorous plant captures flies and captivates nature lovers, but in the wild is found only in North Carolina and South Carolina.

South Dakota's Pheasant Numbers At All Time Low

Fields across the state were speckled with orange today as thousands of hunters enjoyed the official start of pheasant season. While it is a day to celebrate, a report says South Dakota's pheasant (Phasianus colchicus) population may be a problem for hunters this season. "This is a big thing for all of South Dakota," said LaRee Rumbolz, general manager of Super 8 in Mitchell. Pheasant season brings thousands of hunters from all over the country to the Mount Rushmore State. But this year, opening weekend is a little different for the Super 8.

In many former ranges, the prairie chicken is gone, probably never to return

The prairie chicken (Tympanuchus cupido) once numbered about 3 million across an area that stretches through eastern New Mexico, eastern Colorado, western Kansas, western Nebraska, northwest Oklahoma, and in parts of the Texas Panhandle and South Plains. Estimates show their population now at 30,000 to 40,000. In some places that used to be native range, estimates show a 97 percent decline. In many other former ranges, these birds are gone, probably never to return. Today, these birds currently occur in parts of only 10 states.

Journalist Michael McCarthy has chronicled the global loss of wildlife

It is the blizzard of moths that Michael McCarthy remembers most vividly. As a boy growing up in post-World II England, his family would take summer nighttime drives to the coast for holidays, and the car headlights and windshield would soon be so splattered with moths that they would have to stop to clean them off. "That phenomenon has gone. It’s disappeared,” says McCarthy. “It’s disappeared because there has been a horrendous crash in moth numbers in the U.K.”

The amphibian Armageddon - immune suppression by neonicotinoids is the culprit

Last month, a frog died in an Atlanta botanical garden. With it went an entire species never to hop along the Earth again. Biologists at Zoo Atlanta who’d looked after the frog for the past 12 years called him “Toughie.” He was a charismatic, glossy-eyed specimen and the very last Rabbs’ fringe-limbed tree frog in the world. Joseph Mendelson, the director of research at Zoo Atlanta, had been prepared for this. When the Rabbs’ frog was discovered in Panama in 2005, some 80 percent of the population had already been lost to disease. A few were removed in hope of a revival.

Canada's lost aerial insectivores - neonicotinoids are the culprit

Forty years ago, swallows were a common sight in the summer, darting between the beams of old barns or swooping low over the waters of a creek. These swift aerial acrobats seemed to be everywhere -- perched on telephone lines by the dozen awaiting the fall migration, or whirling and diving around old wooden bridges in pursuit of airborne insects. Now, these birds have seemingly disappeared from midair, entirely abandoning large swathes of their former Canadian range. Some, like the bank swallow, have seen their numbers plummet by 98 per cent since 1970.

Butterfly populations collapse in Cumbria

COMMON butterflies saw a collapse in their population numbers in Cumbria over the summer despite the UK experiencing weather conditions that usually help them to thrive. Results from the three-week Big Butterfly Count survey reveal a decline in the insect across the length and breadth of the country. The majority of butterfly species studied as part of the survey saw their populations fall with some producing their worst numbers since the Big Butterfly Count began.

Assessing risks to migratory honey bees from in-hive pesticide contamination in the Eastern United States

This study measured part of the in-hive pesticide exposome by analyzing residues from live in-hive bees, stored pollen, and wax in migratory colonies over time and compared exposure to colony health. We summarized the pesticide burden using three different additive methods: (1) the hazard quotient (HQ), an estimate of pesticide exposure risk, (2) the total number of pesticide residues, and (3) the number of relevant residues. Despite being simplistic, these models attempt to summarize potential risk from multiple contaminations in real-world contexts.