High prevalence of Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in wild populations of lowland leopard frogs Rana yavapaiensis in Arizona

Martin A. Schlaepfer, Michael J. Sredl, Philip C Rosen, Michael J. Ryan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

27 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) is a fungus that can potentially lead to chytridiomycosis, an amphibian disease implicated in die-offs and population declines in many regions of the world. Winter field surveys in the last decade have documented die-offs in populations of the lowland leopard frog Rana yavapaiensis with chytridiomycosis. To test whether the fungus persists in host populations between episodes of observed host mortality, we quantified field-based Bd infection rates during nonwinter months. We used PCR to sample for the presence of Bd in live individuals from nine seemingly healthy populations of the lowland leopard frog as well as four of the American bullfrog R. catesbeiana (a putative vector for Bd) from Arizona. We found Bd in 10 of 13 sampled populations. The overall prevalence of Bd was 43% in lowland leopard frogs and 18% in American bullfrogs. Our results suggest that Bd is widespread in Arizona during nonwinter months and may become virulent only in winter in conjunction with other cofactors, or is now benign in these species. The absence of Bd from two populations associated with thermal springs (water >30°C), despite its presence in nearby ambient waters, suggests that these microhabitats represent refugia from Bd and chytridiomycosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)421-427
Number of pages7
JournalEcoHealth
Volume4
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2007

Fingerprint

Chytridiomycota
Rana pipiens
Ranidae
wild population
frog
fungus
Population
thermal water
winter
spring water
population decline
thermal spring
refugium
microhabitat
amphibian
field survey
Rana catesbeiana
mortality
Fungi
Water

Keywords

  • Chytridiomycosis
  • Conservation
  • Disease
  • Frog
  • Rana
  • Thermal spring

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis
  • Nature and Landscape Conservation

Cite this

High prevalence of Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in wild populations of lowland leopard frogs Rana yavapaiensis in Arizona. / Schlaepfer, Martin A.; Sredl, Michael J.; Rosen, Philip C; Ryan, Michael J.

In: EcoHealth, Vol. 4, No. 4, 12.2007, p. 421-427.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Schlaepfer, Martin A. ; Sredl, Michael J. ; Rosen, Philip C ; Ryan, Michael J. / High prevalence of Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in wild populations of lowland leopard frogs Rana yavapaiensis in Arizona. In: EcoHealth. 2007 ; Vol. 4, No. 4. pp. 421-427.
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