Frogs in the city: What do they indicate


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SAVE THE FROGS DAY celebrated at CiSTUP, IISc, Bangalore. Frogs, their decline, usage etc were discussed. Plans ahead at CiSTUP is also presented.

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Frogs in the city: What do they indicate

  1. 1. Frogs in the City:What do they Indicate?<br />Gururaja KV<br />Centre for infrastructure, Sustainable Transportation and <br />Urban Planning (CiSTUP)<br />Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore <br /><br />
  2. 2. Flow of talk<br />What are frogs?<br />What if, they are not in a city?<br />The Crisis!<br />What we do at CiSTUP?<br />
  3. 3. Did you hear this? If yes, when? <br />
  4. 4. Few more in the Symphony<br />
  5. 5. Frogs are Amphibians<br />What are amphibians?<br />Those vertebrates that live both in water as well as on land<br />That’s what is taught!<br />Photo credit:<br /><br /><br /><br />
  6. 6. Amphibians are dual lifers!<br />Two stages in life – a tadpole stage and an adult stage<br />From Greek, Amphi – dual, bian – life forms<br />
  7. 7. What if, they are not in City?<br />Biological controllers<br />
  8. 8. What if…<br />Bio-indicators<br />Indicators of environmental health<br />Earthquake early warning systems<br />Before that briefly about their uniqueness<br />Biphasic life<br />Ectotherms<br />Skin breathers<br />Anamniotes<br />
  9. 9. Ectotherms<br />Body temperature maintained externally (depends on Sun)<br />Hiding away from Sun<br />Basking in Sun<br />
  10. 10. Skin breathers<br />
  11. 11. Anamniotes<br />Eggs of a frog<br />Eggs of a bird<br />
  12. 12. Habitat specialists<br />Aquatic, Terrestrial, Arboreal and Fussorials<br />
  13. 13. Metamorphosis<br />They metamorphose from tadpole to adult<br />Life span: from 10 months to 55 years<br />
  14. 14. Ecosystem function<br />
  15. 15. Bio-indicators<br />Indicators of environmental health<br />Decline in population<br />Malformations, diseases<br />Call at higher pitch in cities!<br />
  16. 16. Earthquake early warning systems<br />They detect changes in ionsphere (Grant and Halliday, 2010)<br />Perturbations in Ionsphere five days prior to earthquake (detected by VLF and LF)<br />Possible reason is change in radon content in atmosphere, detected through skin<br />VLF<br /># toads<br />Days<br />
  17. 17. Frogs also indicate<br />
  18. 18. Direct benefits to human!<br />Antimicrobial peptides<br />
  19. 19. More on AMP…<br />Image courtesy : Panama Amphibian Rescue and Conservation Project<br />
  20. 20. Cultural issues<br />Frog Hymn (Rig Veda, Mandala 7)<br /><br />Dvija – dual life!!<br />Frog in the boiling water<br />Frog marriage and monsoon<br />Mowgli!!!<br />Photos:<br /><br />
  21. 21. How many are there?<br />Recorded 6639 species of amphibians world wide<br />3 orders, Gymnophiona-183, Caudata-597, Anura-5859<br />In India, 309 species; Gymnophiona-33, Caudata-1, Anura-275<br />caudata<br />Anura<br />Gymnophiona<br />
  22. 22. The Crisis <br />Nearly 1/3 of species are endangered, 200 species disappeared in two decades<br />Main reason for decline – Habitat fragmentation, alteration and attrition <br />Pesticide usage induce malformations and weaken immune system<br />UV-B radiations, climate change<br />Fungal infection - Chytridiomycosis<br />Homogenization of species diversity<br />Data available are poor! Many more to vanish before recording?<br />
  23. 23. Save the frogs before its too late!<br />In Urban Environment<br />
  24. 24. But what do we know from cities?<br />In India<br />Darjeeling 1962, 7 species<br />Pune 1976,77, 79, 13 species; in 2009, 14 species, 9 out of the city, 4 beyond 20km<br />Dharwad 1989, 13 species<br />Bangalore 1999, 16 species (Karthikeyan and Daniels); Bangalore Valley School 2008, 12 species (Vishnupriya, 2008)<br />
  25. 25. Apart from ‘list’, nothing!<br />So no statistical comparison possible<br />Cannot say to decision makers, what needs to be done?<br />But changes in Bangalore are obvious…<br /># Tanks in Bangalore has come down (379 in 1973 and 81 at present, Ramachandra and Malvikaa, 2007)<br />Temperature on rise (~2-2.5°C), Green spaces are decreasing (46000ha in 1973 – 11000ha in 2009; (Ramachandra and Uttam, 2010)<br />Land-conversion rampant<br />Trees along the road side gone!<br />
  26. 26. Just a glimpse through Google<br />
  27. 27. Same place in 2009<br />
  28. 28. Similarly few more places<br />
  29. 29. Same in 2009<br />
  30. 30. What we do at CiSTUP?<br />Base line data on Amphibians of Bangalore<br />Document species in each water tank/green space<br />Drivers of change<br />Citizen science initiative<br />Hands on training<br />
  31. 31. Acknowledgements<br />SV Krishnamurthy for introducing me to Frogs<br />TV Ramachandra for introducing me to Urban systems<br />TG Sitharam for accommodating me in CiSTUP<br />
  32. 32. Special thanks<br />This work was not possible otherwise, if the people mentioned below had not accompanied me in field and made me feel secure, while they took the pain of travelling during night hours, amidst dense forest, heavy rains, tough terrain, creeping creatures and frightening animals.<br />Special thanks to you all - Sameer Ali, Vishnu D Mukri, Karthick B, Sreekantha, SrikanthNaik, Lakshminarayana, Nayak CR, Dinesh KP, AmitYadav, Seshadri KS, Dhanpal G Naidu, Alkananda, Supriya, Uttam Kumar, Hemant Ogle, Palot MJ, Divakar K Mesta, Rao GR, Sudhira HS, VijayaCavale, Harish Bhat, Sumanth, Thulasiraman, Vishnupriya S, Mittal Gala, RamanathChandrashekar, DayaniChakravarthy, VipulRamanuj, SrinidhiKashyap, Subramanian KA, GowriShanker, PradeepGangadkar AS, Archna Singh, Boominathan M, SubashChandran MD, Nisarg R Prakash, Ganesh HS, Aravind NA, Vijay Mohan Raj, Manoj Kumar, Lingaraja, Manikantan, Avinash KG, Suresh GB, Manjunatha MJ, Manjunatha Reddy, SushantoSen, Vijay Kumar SP, VarunTorsekar, Doris, Preetiand forest guards, watchers and many on lookers. <br />
  33. 33. It’s still not too late,<br />SAVE THE FROGS<br />Thank you<br />