Slightly more than one quarter of Madagascar’s amphibian species are threatened with extinction. Habitat destruction and over-harvesting are the greatest factors contributing to this biodiversity crisis, but the impending threat of amphibian chytrid fungus is also of huge concern. Association Mitsinjo, a community-run organization founded by villagers in Andasibe, has launched Madagascar’s first amphibian captive breeding facility. The facility is fully functional and is run by a team of eight Mitsinjo technicians, who are maintaining more than 100 terraria housing eight local species, including a captive assurance colony of the Critically Endangered Golden Mantella Frog (Mantella aurantiaca), one of Madagascar’s most threatened amphibian species. Twenty-five breeding groups were established in separate terraria. Breeding began in late June, 2012 and since then more than 200 egg clutches have been produced with all twenty-five established groups producing fertile eggs.
Activities at Mitsinjo include:
- Development of the Amphibian Education and Outreach Center and community awareness
- Conducting husbandry research on captive frogs at the breeding facility
- Reforesting amphibian habitat at Analamazaotra Forest Station
- Screening wild populations for Bd twice each year
- Patrolling Golden Mantella breeding sites at the Torotorofotsy Wetland
- Long-term monitoring of frog populations around Andasibe