The campaign to stop the mass extinction of amphibian species got a huge shot in the arm today from Clorox — the first official corporate sponsor of Amphibian Ark’s Year of the Frog campaign. Clorox issued a press release today and launched a “save the frog” Web site explaining it was providing funding to Amphibian Ark — plus donating a really big amount of Clorox bleach that will be used worldwide in the fight against the killer frog fungus, chytrid.  Kevin Zippel, Amphibian Ark’s program officer, is doing news interviews this morning about it. And on the Web site (also posted on YouTube and shown in this post) there is a great video explaining the amphibian crisis, chytrid’s role, and how Clorox bleach is used to help in the rescue of threatened species. Also on the Web site is a video of Jeff Corwin talking about it.

Just a terrific leadership move by Clorox. So, you have to be wondering: bleach…and frogs? Here’s something from the press release that explains it:

Clorox® Regular-Bleach, an EPA-registered fungicide, is one of the most important tools in Amphibian Ark’s fight to save the frogs. Frogs are treated with anti-fungal medicine and anything else that has contact with water during amphibian rescue is treated with a bleach solution, from boots and clothing to instruments and transport containers, to be sure researchers are not spreading fungus to new, uncontaminated areas. When zoos and aquariums bring frogs that cannot be saved in the wild into protective custody, their enclosures are treated with a bleach solution daily for the first weeks to be sure they remain fungus-free. (Organizations, including U.S. Geological Survey, recommend using a 1:10% solution of bleach, to disinfect equipment that comes in contact with chytrid fungus. )