If you thought the EDGE Mammals were strange, we now
invite you to enter a world where creatures give birth through
the skin of their backs, can live without lungs, and may survive
without food for over ten years.

Some EDGE amphibians, such as the Chinese giant salamander and
axolotl are relatively well known, but others, such as the lungless
salamanders of Central America, the worm-like Sagalla caecilian, and the
mouth brooding Chile Darwin frogs (which carry their young in their vocal
sac), remain poorly understood.

Amphibians are now in crisis – populations worldwide are disappearing:

  • Over 32% are listed as globally endangered (by comparison, just 12% of all bird species and 23% of
    all mammal species are threatened)
  • Almost half of all known amphibian species are declining
  • As many as 165 amphibian species may already be extinct
  • A greater proportion of amphibians are at imminent risk of extinction than any other animal class.

The amphibians were the original custodians of the land, being the vanguard of the terrestrial (or ground-dwelling) vertebrate invasion. Next time you look at a frog in your garden, consider that its ancient ancestors explored the land 140 million years before the dinosaurs.

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