Hey Northwest herpers!
I just got word that Isaac Standish, a biologist with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, is working with a nonlethal sampling technique involving swabbing for Bd, Bsal and Ranavirus and needs our help. He is trying to reach out to people that may be interested in assisting in some sampling and who better than herpers?? The sampling involves swabbing the keratinized epidermis and breaking the swab off in a tube. He said that he can provide the sampling materials (tubes and swabs) and then participants could sample while herping and then ship the samples back to him. He said that the tubes can be frozen and then shipped in bulk to save on shipping.
Bsal is an impending threat to amphibians and this effort is to try to get ahead of it and Isaac wants our help since we are out in the field anyways. He is based in the Midwest but interested in branching out, particularly in the pacific NW and the southeast since these areas have been identified as hotspots for Bsal monitoring. I thought this could be another great chapter activity for us.
If you are interested in helping Isaac and our amphibians, you can reach him at [email protected]
. It would be really cool to get a group of us together to collect some samples together. I know we are spread out but we could even do several smaller groups. Thoughts?