Action required: Invasive fungus is killing European salamanders
An invasive species of fungus,Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans, from Asia is causing mass death of fire salamanders in the Netherlands, Germany and Belgium. Affected salamanders have a survival rate of 13% over a 10 day period and the fungus only requires a few spores to cause issues. Additionally, these spores are resistant to changes and weather conditions which prolong their presence in the environment. Currently, the European Union has launched efforts into researching a scientific basis for controlling this salamander fungus epidemic.
This fungal infection poses issues similar to disease epidemics in human history such as the plague. Unlike the plague, this issue is caused by fungus so whatever methods that are going to be used to control the spread of the pathogenic fungus will have to be adjusted for being a fungus and that the target is non-human.
I found the topic very interesting but I would have liked the article to delve more into the details such as how long this epidemic has been occurring, what is being done with healthy populations and more information about the infected populations.
Are studies being done on why this specific type of salamander is being affected by this fungus specifically?