Exploring the amphibian exposome in an agricultural landscape using telemetry and passive sampling

Authors: J E Swanson; Erin L Muths; Clay L Pierce; S Dinsmore; M Vandever; Michelle L Hladik; Kelly L Smalling
Contribution Number: 651



This is the first field study of its kind to combine radio telemetry, passive samplers, and pesticide accumulation in tissues to characterize the amphibian exposome as it relates to pesticides. Understanding how habitat drives exposure in individuals (i.e., their exposome), and how that relates to individual health is critical to managing species in an agricultural landscape where pesticide exposure is likely. We followed 72 northern leopard frogs (Lithobates pipiens) in two agricultural wetlands for insight into where and when individuals are at high risk of pesticide exposure. Novel passive sampling devices (PSDs) were deployed at sites where telemetered frogs were located, then moved to subsequent locations as frogs were radio-tracked. Pesticide concentration in PSDs varied by habitat and was greatest in agricultural fields where frogs were rarely found. Pesticide concentrations in frogs were greatest in spring when frogs were occupying wetlands compared to late summer when frogs occupied terrestrial habitats. Our results indicate that habitat and time of year influence exposure and accumulation of pesticides in amphibians. Our study illustrates the feasibility of quantifying the amphibian exposome to interpret the role of habitat use in pesticide accumulation in frogs to better manage amphibians in agricultural landscapes.

Publication details
Published Date: 2018-07-03
Outlet/Publisher: Scientific Reports (2018) 8:10045
Media Format: .PDF

ARMI Organizational Units:
Rocky Mountains, Southern - Biology
Management; Species and their Ecology; Stressors
Place Names:
agriculture; amphibians; ARMI; conservation; habitat; habitat effects; herbicides; land cover/land use; management; pesticides; pond-breeding amphibians; radio telemetry
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