new Zealand's four unique frog species are under threat. A notorious toxic fungus called chytrid, blamed for decimating amphibian populations around the world has been found in the country.
The four native frog species are living fossil frogs, believed to be more than 200 million years old, morphologically older than the dinosaurs. The chytrid fungus, identified in Australia and central America in 1998, was discovered in New Zealand in 1999. Six months ago the native Archey's frog population was found infected with this fungus. These are matchbox sized frogs, that do not have ears and do not croak.
Another native frog, the Hochstetter's frog, was also on the decline and research is underway to discover if the fungus is responsible.
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