SAVE THE FROGS! Ghana Program Co-ordinator Sandra Owusu-Gyamfi has been selected by the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom to represent Ghana at its Conference on Conservation Science from 25th to 27th March 2014.
Sandra will talk about the problems Ghana’s invasive Acheampong weed (Chromolaena odorata) poses for the survival of Ghana’s critically endangered Giant Squeaker Frog (Arthroleptis krokosua). Sandra, who is one of West Africa’s few female amphibian biologists, explains that at the Sui River Forest Reserve the weed has had catastrophic impacts on the frogs. Only 16 individuals of the Squeaker Frog have been found over a ten year.
Sandra says “the Acheampong weed forms dense thickets that act as barriers to the movement of the frogs. The invasive weed also depletes the density of leaf-litter used by the frogs for breeding and hiding from their predators”. Sandra will have the opportunity to interact with some of the world’s leading practitioners in invasive weed control to gain insights into new techniques and approaches that can be applied within Ghana to deal with the Acheampong weed.
SAVE THE FROGS! Ghana Executive Director Gilbert Adum says that “it is a wonderful opportunity for the organization to put Ghana on the world map for leading such an initiative in the West African region. Frogs in the region, like elsewhere in the world, have been disappearing for the last three decades and we must wake up to their own siren calls to save them.” While in the United Kingdom, Sandra will also meet and interact with frog lovers and share with them the tools SAVE THE FROGS! Ghana has been utilizing to protect the country’s frogs. She will also donate some SAVE THE FROGS! Ghana souvenirs and seek more collaboration for saving Ghana’s vanishing frogs.
Sandra Owusu-Gyamfi and Hamdia Mahama (University of Ghana), Ghana’s first two female amphibian biologists