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  • WILL WE ALL BENEFIT FROM THE FROG PHARMACY ONE DAY?
    so In the 1930s frogs were important contributors to the medical field Well before the advent of modern pregnancy tests two scientists discovered that the African clawed frog could be used to test for pregnancy in women In the next two decades tens of thousands of these animals were imported from their native Africa as hospitals in North America began stocking them for use in early rapid pregnancy detection More recently scientists have discovered that most frog species produce skin secretions of amino acid compounds called peptides These peptides help protect frogs otherwise sensitive and porous skin from bacterial and fungal infections Some even discourage predators which find the peptides distasteful The discovery of these peptide secretions and their properties has produced several avenues of research with applications for human medicine One research team from the United Kingdom has identified an important set of antibiotics in the skin of an Australian tree frog These scientists have discovered that the peptides from the tree frog kill bacteria that are resistant to conventional antibiotics Modern medicines typically combat bacteria by targeting vital enzymes to which the bacteria can develop a resistance an increasingly alarming problem in modern medicine The frog peptides eliminate bacteria by dismantling bacterial cell membranes making the frog derived antibiotics more permanently effective In other developments the poison from a beautiful but deadly South American poison dart frog is finally being thoroughly analyzed for use as a painkiller In 1976 extract from the skin of a rare frog from Ecuador was found to be more effective than morphine at blocking pain but was also highly toxic to most animals The difficulty in isolating and identifying the precise chemical compound responsible for the painkilling effect among the suite of toxic compounds present in the frog s skin secretions prevented it

    Original URL path: http://parcplace.org/parcplace/publications/herp-articles/153-will-we-all-benefit-from-the-frog-pharmacy-one-day.html (2016-02-01)
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  • Herp Articles
    will make sure that the turtle destroyers are identified and put in the spotlight of public scrutiny These are the kind of advocates it takes to get the attention of the public and government officials in Canada They are the same kind of people who promote environmental awareness and protection in the States Read more TORONTO TURTLES SEND A MESSAGE PEOPLE HAVE MANY QUESTIONS ABOUT GECKOS qu by Whit Gibbons The following are comments and questions received recently about an exotic species of lizard that is becoming more prevalent in many areas Q We have at least two pale colored lizards that live beneath the wall lamp on the outside of our apartment in Orlando Someone told us they were geckos but that they are not native to the United States Are they harmful to people or to our native wildlife Read more PEOPLE HAVE MANY QUESTIONS ABOUT GECKOS HOW MANY ANOLES DOES FLORIDA HAVE By Whit Gibbons June 3 2007 When I was growing up in Alabama and Louisiana we called the little green lizards that could turn brown chameleons Today herpetologists refer to them as anoles saving the other term for the Old World chameleons that change their body color to match their background Another difference between now and then is that the United States once had only one anole Today we have at least eight species and most of the invaders live in Florida In the book Anoles Those Florida Yard Lizards 2006 Commahawk Publishing LLC Orlando Steven B Isham does a great job of making readers more aware of their presence and importance The style of the book is different from a basic field guide that identifies animals or plants or an ecology book that discusses the general biology of species Instead according to the author

    Original URL path: http://parcplace.org/parcplace/publications/herp-articles.html?start=5 (2016-02-01)
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  • Herp Articles
    an endless rain of opinions reflections and interpretations about his life and untimely death could be found on numerous Web sites and in news media Because he worked mostly with crocodiles and venomous snakes which are reptiles he was viewed by many as a herpetologist So what do herpetologists have to say about him Read more WAS THE CROCODILE HUNTER AN ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATOR WHAT DO WE MEAN BY EXTINCTION by Whit Gibbons February 14 2007 Extinct is a word that will continue to exist as it has for five centuries According to the Oxford English Dictionary the word was first used in 1432 Like many commonly used words extinct can be depicted in different ways including five fairly discrete categories Dinosaurs and millions of other prehistoric species can be placed in the category of prehuman extinction the end line of natural evolutionary processes a condition no human can be blamed for The next category is that of human caused extinctions such as the passenger pigeon and dodo bird although no one alive today can be held accountable Read more WHAT DO WE MEAN BY EXTINCTION CAN WE NOW PROTECT THE GOPHER FROG by Whit Gibbons December 10 2006 This column was inspired by two seemingly unrelated events First Michael Dorcas of Davidson College and I are in the process of writing a book called Frogs and Toads of the Southeast to be published by the University of Georgia Press Second when the U S Senate and House of Representatives reconvene next month they will have a different configuration What is the common thread between these two situations Environmental protection specifically protection for the gopher frog Read more CAN WE NOW PROTECT THE GOPHER FROG LET S MAKE SURE THE FROGS KEEP CALLING by Whit Gibbons March 5 2006 Bad news

    Original URL path: http://parcplace.org/parcplace/publications/herp-articles.html?start=10 (2016-02-01)
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  • Herp Articles
    used for food but people also found other uses for them More than 20 000 of the docile and cooperative birds were used as shooting gallery targets on the Coney Island midway Passenger pigeons despite their millions dwindled away over the years as the onslaught continued Everyone took the abundant and commonly seen birds for granted One way to capture pigeons was to lure them to a would be feeding spot with a decoy a tame pigeon sitting on a stool Upon seeing the stool pigeon passing flocks would land only to be captured in a net trap According to one authority approximately 10 nettings of about 1 200 passenger pigeons each were made in a day more than 80 000 being captured in some weeks The actual toll was even greater when trapping occurred during the nesting season because countless nestlings lost their parents and starved in the nest as a result The extinction of the passenger pigeon is a commentary on a persistent and dangerous attitude of that era the belief that we could exploit any natural system to the fullest without regard for long term sustainability Unfortunately the attitude exists even today The approach of squeezing everything we can out of natural areas for fast financial gain may be the most costly feature of free enterprise The final payment may be far more costly than anyone anticipated By the late 1800s some people including a few legislators realized that Americans had overextended their exploitation of the passenger pigeon By the 1900s laws were being passed to prevent wholesale killing and trapping of the once most common of birds But as is true with many of today s environmental laws the rulings were passed too late were not stringently enforced and left too many loopholes No one can be sure when and where the last passenger pigeon died in the wild But the last known lonely passenger pigeon died in captivity on September 1 1914 in the Cincinnati Zoo The next time you hear a bullfrog smell a wax myrtle or see a tiger swallowtail butterfly stop and appreciate it Although they are common today let s not let them become the passenger pigeons of tomorrow Let s support protection of natural habitats Are Alligator Snappers Out Of The Soup by Whit Gibbons South Carolina and Louisiana have major problems with some of their senior citizens As summer begins Louisiana will have begun to address the problem for one group South Carolina will still be seeking a solution for their denizens The problem relates not to AARP members but to turtles how to control their removal from the wild by commercial turtle trappers Neither state can afford to lose many more of their native turtles and keep their natural heritage intact Recent positive action by the Louisiana senate regarding one species bears mentioning One of the most magnificent reptiles in America is the alligator snapping turtle a species that is fast disappearing from southern rivers and swamps The

    Original URL path: http://parcplace.org/parcplace/publications/herp-articles.html?start=15 (2016-02-01)
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  • Herp Articles
    Award 2014 Year of the Salamander 2013 Year of the Snake 2012 Year of the Lizard 2011 Year of the Turtle PARC 10 year Anniversary Habitat in Focus Resources PARCAS Priority Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Areas Job Listings Listserve DoD PARC Grants Links Habitat Tools Climate Change and Herps Relocation Reintroduction Translocation and Headstarting PARC Disease Task Team Support PARC Search Herp Articles Featured Publications PARC Annual Reports PARC Inventory and Monitoring Guide Publications Wetland Related Publications Diamondback Terrapin Resources Latest News from PARC Alison Haskell Award PARC Visionary Leader Award Haskell Award Winners 2013 Designated YEAR OF THE SNAKE Resources Job Information Meeting Event Calendar Email Listserve Research and Consultant Contacts Conservation Resources Amphibian Declines and Chytrid Bd Grant Information Links Herp Articles Environmental Questions Come With Springtime by Whit Gibbons Last night I sat on the back porch and watched a sign of spring lightning bugs flitting through the tops of the hickory trees This morning I sat in the same spot and listened to another sign of spring a carpenter bee looking for a place to drill a hole in the rafters Along with these harbingers of spring come flowers migrating birds and questions about the environment

    Original URL path: http://parcplace.org/parcplace/publications/herp-articles.html?start=20 (2016-02-01)
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  • Quarters for Conservation
    Focus Resources PARCAS Priority Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Areas Job Listings Listserve DoD PARC Grants Links Habitat Tools Climate Change and Herps Relocation Reintroduction Translocation and Headstarting PARC Disease Task Team Support PARC Search Quarters for Conservation Featured Publications PARC Annual Reports PARC Inventory and Monitoring Guide Publications Wetland Related Publications Diamondback Terrapin Resources Quarters for Conservation PARC has been selected as one of four programs featured in the Greenville Zoo s Quarters for Conservation program For those not familiar with this program participating zoos give each person a token as they enter the zoo Inside there is a kiosk displaying brief descriptions of 3 5 conservation programs and each zoo visitor can vote for a particular project by dropping his or her token into the well corresponding to the project they want to support This allows 0 25 of every zoo entrance fee plus a small portion of annual membership fees to be put toward the Quarters for Conservation program A portion of the funds raised in this effort goes back to the zoo s conservation programs and the remainder is provided to the selected projects PARC is honored to be among these selected projects at the Greenville Zoo PARC would like to thank Barbara Foster and the Greenville Zoo s Conservation and Research Committee for nominating and selecting our organization Click here for more information about the Greenville Zoo s Quarters for Conservation program and PARC s involvement Click PARC s link on the right hand side The funds that PARC receives from this program will go towards amphibian and reptile conservation efforts So if you live nearby or are going to be near Greenville SC please visit the Greenville Zoo and vote for PARC If you re interested in checking out Quarters for Conservation programs near you

    Original URL path: http://parcplace.org/parcplace/news-a-events/news/278-quarters-for-conservation.html (2016-02-01)
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  • PARC 2012 Annual Report Now Available
    Award 2014 Year of the Salamander 2013 Year of the Snake 2012 Year of the Lizard 2011 Year of the Turtle PARC 10 year Anniversary Habitat in Focus Resources PARCAS Priority Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Areas Job Listings Listserve DoD PARC Grants Links Habitat Tools Climate Change and Herps Relocation Reintroduction Translocation and Headstarting PARC Disease Task Team Support PARC Search PARC 2012 Annual Report Now Available Featured Publications PARC

    Original URL path: http://parcplace.org/parcplace/news-a-events/news/272-pubs-2012-annual-report.html (2016-02-01)
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  • PARC 2011 Annual Report Now Available
    Award 2014 Year of the Salamander 2013 Year of the Snake 2012 Year of the Lizard 2011 Year of the Turtle PARC 10 year Anniversary Habitat in Focus Resources PARCAS Priority Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Areas Job Listings Listserve DoD PARC Grants Links Habitat Tools Climate Change and Herps Relocation Reintroduction Translocation and Headstarting PARC Disease Task Team Support PARC Search PARC 2011 Annual Report Now Available Featured Publications PARC

    Original URL path: http://parcplace.org/parcplace/news-a-events/news/266-pubs-2011-annual-report.html (2016-02-01)
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