Guest ridicule by David Middleton
From the American Association for the Advancement of Science of America (AAASA)…
The world’s largest amphibian is being bred to extinction
The world’s largest amphibian—the Chinese giant salamander (Andrias davidianus, pictured)—should be split into at least five species, all of which are critically endangered in the wild, according to a new study. What’s more, say the authors, current conservation practices could be causing these genetically distinct species to crossbreed with one another, effectively fusing them into a single species.
The salamanders, which can grow up to 2 meters in length, were once common in rivers across southeastern China. But today, most are found in commercial farms, which breed the giant amphibians to satisfy growing demand from the luxury food market. In an effort to augment wild populations, the Chinese government encourages the release of farm-raised individuals. But it’s not clear whether those individuals are genetically equivalent to wild salamanders.
This is like saying that if all 202 AKC recognized dog breeds were interbred to create one single breed, that 202 species would have become extinct… And since most dogs don’t live in the wild (although way too many are homeless), Canis lupus familiaris would be critically endangered in the wild.