The British Herpetological Society

The Herpetological Journal is the Society's prestigious quarterly scientific journal. Articles are listed in Biological Abstracts, Current Awareness in Biological Sciences,Current Contents, Science Citation Index, and Zoological Record.

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pdf 01. Emerging infectious disease threats to European herpetofauna

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Open Access

https://doi.org/10.33256/hj29.4.189206

pp. 189-206

Authors: Steven J. R. Allain & Amanda L. J. Duffus

Abstract: In the past decade, infectious disease threats to European herpetofauna have become better understood. Since the 1990s, three major emerging infections in amphibians have been identified (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, B. salamandrivorans, and ranaviruses) as well as at least one of unknown status (herpesviruses), while two major emerging infections of reptiles (Ophidiomyces ophiodiicola and ranaviruses) have been identified in wild European populations. The effects of emerging infections on populations have ranged from non-existent to local extirpation. In this article, we review these major infectious disease threats to European herpetofauna, including descriptions of key mortality and/or morbidity events in Europe of their emergence, and address both the distribution and the host diversity of the agent. Additionally, we direct the reader to newly developed resources that facilitate the study of infectious agents in herpetofauna and again stress the importance of an interdisciplinary approach to examining these infectious diseases.

Keywords: Batrachochytrium dendrobatids, B. salamandrivorans, herpesviruses, ophidiomycosis, ranaviruses,
amphibians, reptiles

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