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In recent years, many frog species around the world have declined in numbers or even gone extinct due to changes in their environment. These population declines and extinctions have serious consequences for the ecosystems in which frogs live; for example, frogs help play a role in protecting humans by eating disease-carrying insects. Several methods have been proposed to solve the problem of declining frog populations.

First, frogs are being harmed by pesticides, which are chemicals used to prevent insects from damaging farm crops such as corn and sugarcane. Pesticides often spread from farmland into neighboring frog habitats. Once pesticides enter a frog’s body, they attack the nervous system, leading to severe breathing problems. If laws prohibited the farmers from using harmful pesticides near sensitive frog populations, it would significantly reduce the harm pesticides cause to frogs.

A second major factor in frog population decline is a fungus that has spread around the world with deadly effect. The fungus causes thickening of the skin, and since frogs use their skin to absorb water, infected frogs die of dehydration. Recently, researchers have discovered several ways to treat or prevent infection, including antifungal medication and treatments that kill the fungus with heat. Those treatments, if applied on a large scale, would protect sensitive frog populations from infection.

Third, in a great many cases, frog populations are in decline simply because their natural habitats are threatened. Since most frog species lay their eggs in water, they are dependent on water and wetland habitats. Many such habitats are threatened by human activities, including excessive water use or the draining of wetlands to make them suitable for development. If key water habitats such as lakes and marshes were better protected from excessive water use and development, many frog species would recover.

词汇与表达整理

  • in numbers 大量地
  • extinct adj. 灭绝的;熄灭的
  • Due to 由于,因为
  • have consequences for 对于。。。产生后果
  • play a role in 在。。。起作用
  • pesticides n. 农药;杀虫剂
  • sugarcane n. 甘蔗
  • the nervous system 神经系统
  • prohibit sb. from doing sth. 阻止某人做某事
  • significantly adv. 显著地;相当数量地
  • fungus n. 真菌,霉菌
  • thickening n. 增厚
  • die of 死于
  • dehydration 脱水
  • antifungal adj. 抗真菌的
  • be dependent on 依靠于;依赖于
  • excessive adj. 过多的,极度的
  • draining n. 排水;使枯竭
  • drain the pond for the fish 竭泽而渔
  • marsh n. 沼泽

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