Navigation Links
Climate change a likely culprit in coqui frog's altered calls, say UCLA biologists
Date:4/14/2014

Changes in the Puerto Rican climate over the past three decades have caused small but significant changes to the coqui frog, the territory's national animal. UCLA biologists have found that not only have male coquis become smaller, but their mating call has also become shorter and higher pitched.

Authored by Peter Narins, UCLA distinguished professor of integrative biology and physiology and of ecology and evolutionary biology, and Sebastiaan Meenderink, a UCLA physics researcher, the study examined 170 male coqui frogs (Eleutherodactylus coqui) in 1983 and then 116 males in 2006. The study included frogs found at 28 altitudes in Puerto Rico, ranging from about 10 yards above sea level to more than 1,100 yards above sea level.

The study, the first to show the effect of temperature change on a species of frogs in the tropics over a period of more two decades, was published online April 9 in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B, and will appear later in the print edition.

"We think the animal adapted to temperature change by becoming smaller, which we believe causes the differences in their calls," said Meenderink, who was previously a postdoctoral scholar in Narins' laboratory. The male's call is significant because it is used to attract females and to defend territory from other males.

Narins, who has studied the coqui for 41 years, said although the change is not very large, it is statistically significant and may well be a sign of difficult years ahead for the animal. The coqui is so beloved in Puerto Rico that it is the subject of songs and children's stories there.

Now, because of climate change, its reproductive success is likely to decrease substantially, the scientists predict.

"If current trends continue unabated, the coqui frog will sound and look quite different before this century is over," said Narins, a faculty member in the UCLA College of Letters and Science.

The scientists found that frogs at comparable altitudes are more than 10 percent smaller in length than they were 23 years earlier. Using data from four weather stations in Puerto Rico, the researchers also learned that the temperatures increased by almost 0.5 degrees Fahrenheit over that time. Although that amount of warming doesn't sound like much, it is meaningful over such a brief period of time. If it continues or worsens in coming decades, it could be very dangerous for the coqui, whose existence dates back more than 11,000 years, and perhaps much longer than that.

According to Narins, some 30 percent of the world's more than 6,300 species of frogs and toads are endangered for a variety of reasons including climate change, chemical contamination of the water supply, destruction of their habitats and exposure to deadly fungi. In addition to their own intrinsic value, many of the species are important because scientists can study them to discover new treatments for disease. That opportunity would be lost if the animals become extinct.

In addition, the changes affecting the coqui could have an adverse effect on Puerto Rico's food chain, because owls, snakes, land crabs and other animals dine on the animal.


'/>"/>

Contact: Stuart Wolpert
swolpert@support.ucla.edu
310-206-0511
University of California - Los Angeles
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Better climate predictions within grasp
2. Warming climate has consequences for Michigans forests
3. Gothenburg scientist in Nature: Climate models underestimate costs to future generations
4. Southwestern bird and reptile distributions to shift as climate changes
5. UN climate report: Pricing of CO2 emissions critical
6. Deforestation of sandy soils a greater climate threat
7. What will climate policy mean for coal?
8. Study shows invasive species in waterways on rise due to climate change
9. Study: Salamanders shrinking due to climate change
10. The causes and consequences of global climate warming that took place 56 million years ago studied
11. Deep ocean current may slow due to climate change, Penn research finds
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Climate change a likely culprit in coqui frog's altered calls, say UCLA biologists
(Date:1/25/2017)... YORK , Jan. 25, 2017 The ... Access Management (IAM) lifecycle is comprised of a ... for the purpose of maintaining digital identities and ... resources and applications. There are significant number of ... from time to time by optimizing processes and ...
(Date:1/23/2017)... -- The latest mobile market research from Acuity Market Intelligence ... quarterly average price of a biometric smartphone decreased from ... There are now 120 sub-$150 models on the market ... 28 a year ago at an average price of ... , Acuity Market Intelligence Principal, "Biometric Smartphones are a ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... , Jan. 19, 2017 Sensory ... experience and security for consumer electronics, and ... processing systems and cybersecurity solutions, today announced a ... and financial institutions worldwide to bolster security of ... end-to-end secure user authentication platforms they offer, innerCore ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/22/2017)... ... 2017 , ... LabRoots , the leading provider of educational and interactive ... to announce the launch of a new scholarship for young scientists seeking a degree ... scholarship is open to all high school seniors, 17 years or older; as well ...
(Date:2/22/2017)... Aethlon Medical, Inc. (Nasdaq: AEMD ... validated the ability of the Aethlon Hemopurifier® to capture ... in immune-suppressed sepsis patients and also contribute to organ ... of the study was to validate the in ... and Herpes Simplex virus 1 (HSV1) by the Hemopurifier®. ...
(Date:2/22/2017)... PHOENIX and SAN DIEGO ... Technology Holdings (the "Company") (OTCQB:CELZ) announced today expansion ... universal donor stem cell product through establishment of ... initiated research activities at the San Diego BioLabs ... Companies, Boehringer Ingelheim, Novartis, and Sanofi. ...
(Date:2/21/2017)... Feb. 21, 2017 /PRNewswire/ - SQI Diagnostics Inc. ("SQI" or the ... results for the three months ended December 31, 2016. ... life sciences and diagnostics company that develops and commercializes proprietary ... ... build on the commercial milestones achieved in fiscal 2016," said ...
Breaking Biology Technology: