B.C. frogs in danger from global warming
Pacific tree frog. (COURTESY MINISTRY OF ENVIRONMENT)
A University of B.C. researcher says local frogs could be in danger from increasing temperatures due to global warming.
Biodiversity Research Centre’s Jennifer Sunday said habitats such as forests especially need to be protected or species such as the Pacific tree frog or the Oregon spotted frog — also found in B.C. — could die off.
“It’s not so much that they’ll croak because of high temperature, but their population will slowly dwindle,” she said on Tuesday.
“More the problem is species will lose energy and not be able to reproduce as much.”
Her research found that cold-blooded creatures, including lizards, need to adapt by finding shade, moistening their skin or burrowing into the ground to keep temperatures cool.
Species such as the Oregon spotted frog, for example, can survive in temperatures from 35 C down to -1 C.
“They’re vulnerable because their populations are already quite small in B.C. in general,” Sunday said.
“We know from our research that most organisms already rely on that shade and they’ll need it even more in the future.”