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Fish and amphibian biologists meet in St. Louis

By Julie Bierach, KWMU

St. Louis, MO. – Hundreds of scientists from all over the world are gathering in St. Louis this week for the Joint Meeting of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists.

Ichthyologists, or fish biologists, and herpetologists, those that study reptiles and amphibians, are sharing their research on everything from amphibian conservation to recent findings in the evolution of the animals.

Geoff Sorrell is a graduate student at Auburn University. He's studying neo-tropical snakes.

"There's a whole field of study, it seems now, on global amphibian declines, and climate change is one of the potential causes of that," Sorrell said. "There's other anthropogenic causes, diseases like chytridiomycosis, which is something that attacks the skin of the amphibians."

A special Carl Linnaeus symposium is also being held.

Linnaeus is often referred to as the "father of modern ecology."

In the 17th century, he developed a system for ranking and classifying organisms that is still used today.

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