Herpetofauna from 18 caves are described for the first time. In total, 17 taxa (10 amphibians and seven reptiles) are identified, three of which correspond to their first fossil record for Belgium (Alytes obstetricans, Pelobates fuscus, and Hyla arborea). The thermophilic snake Zamenis longissimus is documented for the first time in the Holocene (Atlantic/Subboreal period) of Belgium. After marine isotope stage (MIS) 5, the Belgian herpetofauna was still reasonably diverse during MIS 3, but it seems to be represented only by the common frog Rana temporaria and a viper during MIS 2.  Leer más.


We report the first cases of mortality in anurans associated with the presence of the fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis at four different localities from Catalonia (NE Iberian Peninsula, Spain). All cases were confirmed by both molecular techniques and histology. The infected individuals were two Mediterranean painted frogs (Discoglossus pictus) from Girona province found in 2018 and 2020, one Iberian waterfrog (Pelophylax perezi) from Tarragona province found in 2018, and one European common frog (Rana temporaria) from Barcelona province found in 2019. This is the first time that mortality associated with this pathogen has been confirmed in D. pictus and P. perezi. Leer más.


Giant, long-necked sauropods, thought to include the largest land animals ever to have existed, preferred to live in warmer, more tropical regions on Earth, suggesting they may have had a different physiology from other dinosaurs, according to a new study led by researchers at UCL and the University of Vigo. The study, published in the journal Current Biology, investigated the enigma of why sauropod fossils are only found at lower latitudes, while fossils of other main dinosaur types seem ubiquitously present, with many located in the polar regions. Leer más.