Amphibians of Central and Southern Africa is the first comprehensive guide to the frogs, toads, and caecilians of the ten sub-equatorial African countries - Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. The result is at once a valuable reference tool, a field guide, and a source of ideas for future research. A source of increasing interest in their own right, amphibians are also benchmark species for biodiversity, and are used as laboratory animals in many of the sciences. In the wild, amphibians, especially frogs, act as natural monitors of water quality and are invaluable in pest control. Their skins secrete a wide range of pharmacologically active substances, such as antibiotics and painkillers. Yet frog populations are declining worldwide, mainly due to human destruction of their habitats. Alan Channing synthesises information published over the last century to provide the first natural history and a portrait of the amphibian fauna of this vast region. Key features of Amphibians of Central and Southern Africa include detailed accounts for 205 species of frogs and toads (and 2 species of caecilian) accompanied by colour illustrations, distribution maps, details of breeding and tadpole behavior, and call descriptions. Illustrations and tadpole identification keys for each genus are featured, as well as special sections for some species with topics such as "skin toxins". Finally, you will find an overview of fossil frogs, a discussion of humankind and frogs in Africa, and a bibliography of African frog biology.
Alan Channing. 470 pages. 2001. Hardcover. ISBN - 9780801438653