EDGE Community

Claudio Soto-Azat MV, MSc
  • Project Manager
  • Researcher
  • EDGE Fellow Alumnus
[General description section]
Since 2004 I have been involved in animal conservation, working in different projects focussed in endangered mammals such as the southern river otter (Lontra provocax), marine otter (Lontra felina), Darwin’s fox (Pseudalopex fulvipes). More recently I have been involved in the protection and conservation of Darwin’s frogs of Chile; as part as a partnership with the Zoological Society of London we have started expeditions in search of the Northern Darwin’s frog (Rhinoderma rufum, EDGE #45). The other related species, the Southern Darwin’s frog (R. darwinii, EDGE #544), was named in honour of Charles Darwin, who found this frog during his epic voyage on the H.M.S. Beagle in February 1835, near the city of Valdivia.

Rhinoderma rufum was recognised as a separate species in 1902. The behaviour that sets these frogs apart from all other amphibians in the world is that the males care for their young by incubating them in their vocal sacs for part of their development. There has been no sign of R. rufum since 1980 and the reasons for its abrupt disappearance remain poorly understood. For that reason I became an EDGE Fellow trying to answer why these frogs are disappearing and evaluating the impact of chytridiomycosis on native amphibians with special concern of Darwin´s frog, through the project: “Saving the last mouth brooding frogs: is chytriomycosis driving Darwin’s frogs extinction?”
Universidad Andres Bello
Position within organisation
Academic and Conservation Medicine PhD student

This project is investigating the enigmatic declines of the Darwin's frogs in Chile.

ZSL, EDGE Fellowship programme: EDGE Fellow Alumni

This project supports in-country EDGE Fellows to help conserve relevant EDGE species

Relevant species

One of only two mouth-brooding frogs, it has not been seen since around 1980.

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Research interests
Amphibian conservation, wildlife ecology.
Relevant publications
Soto-Azat C., B.T. Clarke, J.C. Poynton, A.A. Cunningham. In press. Widespread historical presence of Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in African pipid frogs. Biodiversity and Distributions.

Soto-Azat C., B.T. Clarke, J.C. Poynton, M.C. Fisher, S. Walker, A.A. Cunningham. 2009. Non-invasive sampling methods for the detection of Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in archived amphibians. Diseases of Aquatic Organisms, 84: 163-166.

Soto-Azat C., F. Boher, M. Fabry, P. Pascual, G. Medina–Vogel. 2008. Surgical implantation of intra-abdominal radiotransmitters in marine otters (Lontra felina) in Central Chile. Journal of Wildlife Diseases, 44: 979-982.

Soto-Azat C., F. Boher, G. Flores, E. Mora, A. Santibáñez, G. Medina-Vogel. 2006. Reversible anesthesia in wild marine otters (Lontra felina) using ketamine and medetomidine. Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine, 37: 535 – 538.

Medina-Vogel G., F. Boher, G. Flores, A. Santibáñez, C. Soto-Azat. 2007. Spacing behavior of marine otters (Lontra felina) in relation to land refuges and fishery wastes in Central Chile. Journal of Mammalogy 88: 487 – 494.

Soto-Azat C., M. Sepúlveda, G. Medina-Vogel. 2006. Veterinary aspects of captured otters: background, considerations and proposals for an adequate management. In: Cassini M.H., M. Sepúlveda (eds.). El Huillín Lontra provocax: Investigaciones sobre una nutria patagónica en peligro de extinción. Serie Fauna Neotropical 1, Publicaciones de la Organización PROFAUNA , Buenos Aires. Pp:147–152.
Associated Blog Posts
26th Jun 13
Former EDGE fellow Claudio Soto-Azat has recently published a paper on the conservation of Darwin’s frogs, which includes the northern Darwin’s frog (Rhi...  Read

23rd May 12
The Nahuelbuta Mountain Range is located within the northern limit of the Valdivian forest ecoregion near the coast of south-central Chile. It is conside...  Read

28th Oct 11
Trying to save one EDGE species was apparently not enough for former EDGE Fellow Claudio Soto-Azat. He has been working for a few years in conservation effor...  Read

10th Aug 11
Clauidio Soto Azat EDGE fellow in the Darwin’s frog Project and Researcher at the Universidad Andrés Bello (UNAB) lead a rescue operation of four Darwin...  Read

27th Apr 11
The unique early development of Darwin’s frogs By EDGE Fellow Claudio Soto-Azat Darwin’s frogs are two species of endemic anurans: the Northern Darwi...  Read

18th Oct 10
A second update from EDGE Fellow Claudio Soto-Azat. Darwin’s frogs are two species of endangered anurans endemic to the native template beech forests of C...  Read

11th Oct 10
An update from EDGE Fellow Claudio Soto-Azat Darwin’s frogs (Rhinoderma darwinii and R. rufum) are two endangered amphibians species only known from the t...  Read

23rd Apr 10
In the last year, EDGE Fellow for the conservation of Darwin’s frogs, wildlife veterinarian, Claudio Soto, has undertaken several activities in order to kn...  Read

12th Apr 10
Today's Species of the Day is the Darwin's frog (Rhinoderma darwinii). This is one of our EDGE amphibian focal species, along with its only close relative, t...  Read

17th Dec 09
Intrepid frog fan and documentary-maker Lucy Cooke recently embarked upon a South American odyssey to document the curious lives of amphibians and highlight ...  Read