Dec 8

When it comes to picking your favourite species, amphibians probably aren’t very high on many people’s list. Even I will admit that before joining the ARKive team I hadn’t given them much thought, being captivated instead by all things furry, feathery and scaly! However, since helping the ARKive team to track down images of the world’s threatened amphibian species, I have to say I am a convert!

Despite the fact that a third of all amphibians are now threatened with extinction, this fascinating, colourful and rather beautiful group of animals is often overlooked. Fortunately there are people out there working hard to put that right, including one of ARKive’s very own media donors, Colombian herpetologist Victor Fabio Luna-Mora.

According to the IUCN Red List, Colombia is home to 213 Vulnerable, Endangered and Critically Endangered amphibian species, including colourful little poison frogs like Ranitomeya tolimensis, the oddly named Boulenger’s backpack frog, beautiful glass frogs including Savage’s cochran frog and four Endangered salamander species such as the Pandi mushroom-tongue salamander.

Savage's cochran frog

Savage's cochran frog

While ARKive aims to raise the profile of endangered species on a global scale, Victor and his colleagues Manuel Gilberto Guayara and Ricardo Medina are working hard on the frontline of conservation, educating local people of all ages in Colombia about the plight of amphibians on their doorstep and what they can do to help.

Victor’s project, which is supported by the Conservation Leadership Programme and Conservación Internacional Colombia, aims to raise awareness and understanding in the local community through a series of educational workshops, talks, games and field trips that provide an insight into the methods used to study amphibians by researchers around the world.

Through this work Victor and his team have gathered together a fantastic collection of images of threatened amphibians which he has kindly donated to ARKive. By contributing his images to us, Victor hopes to encourage people from around the world to take an interest in amphibians and amphibian conservation.

Why not take a look at our amphibian pages today or use our Explore by geography feature to find threatened amphibians in your area? Who knows, maybe you will end up an amphibian convert too!

Claire Lewis, ARKive Media Researcher