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Diseases of Aquatic Organisms

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DAO 92:201-207 (2010)  -  DOI:

Contribution to the DAO Special 'Chytridiomycosis: An emerging disease'

Future potential distribution of the emerging amphibian chytrid fungus under anthropogenic climate change

Dennis Rödder1,2, Jos Kielgast3,*, Stefan Lötters2

1Zoologisches Forschungsmuseum Alexander Koenig, Adenauerallee 160, 53113 Bonn, Germany
2Department of Biogeography, Trier University, Am Wissenschaftspark 25-27, 54296 Trier, Germany
3Natural History Museum of Denmark, Zoological Museum, Universitetsparken 15, 2100 Copenhagen, Denmark
*Corresponding author. Email:

ABSTRACT: Anthropogenic climate change poses a major threat to global biodiversity with a potential to alter biological interactions at all spatial scales. Amphibians are the most threatened vertebrates and have been subject to increasing conservation attention over the past decade. A particular concern is the pandemic emergence of the parasitic chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, which has been identified as the cause of extremely rapid large-scale declines and species extinctions. Experimental and observational studies have demonstrated that the host–pathogen system is strongly influenced by climatic parameters and thereby potentially affected by climate change. Herein we project a species distribution model of the pathogen onto future climatic scenarios generated by the IPCC to examine their potential implications on the pandemic. Results suggest that predicted anthropogenic climate change may reduce the geographic range of B. dendrobatidis and its potential influence on amphibian biodiversity.

KEY WORDS: Amphibia · Anthropogenic future climate change · Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis · Bioclimate · Chytridiomycosis · Global warming · Maxent · Species distribution model

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Cite this article as: Rödder D, Kielgast J, Lötters S (2010) Future potential distribution of the emerging amphibian chytrid fungus under anthropogenic climate change. Dis Aquat Org 92:201-207.

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