Despite the high amphibian biodiversity and increasing pesticide use in tropical countries, knowledge on the sensitivity of tropical amphibians to pesticides remains limited. The aim of this study was to evaluate the acute toxicity of the active ingredients of four of the main herbicides used in Brazilian sugarcane production to tadpoles of two tropical frog species: Physalaemus cuvieri and Hypsiboas pardalis. The calculated 96 h-LC50 (median lethal concentration; in mg a.s./L) values for P. cuvieri and H. pardalis were 4.4 and 7.8 (acetochlor); 15 and <10 (ametryn); 115 and 106 (glyphosate); and 85 and 68 (metribuzin), respectively. These toxicity values demonstrated little interspecies variation and the toxicity of the herbicides appeared to be at least partly related with the respective octanol-water coefficient. Published acute toxicity data of fish and amphibians for herbicides were also compiled from the US-EPA ECOTOX database. These data indicated little difference in herbicide sensitivity between tropical amphibians and both non-tropical amphibians and fish. These findings indicate that temperate (fish and amphibian) herbicide toxicity data are also protective for tropical amphibians. Constraints in such extrapolations and indications for future research are discussed.
- Aquatic ecotoxicology
- Native species