Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis detected in amphibians from National Forests in eastern Texas, USA
The amphibian disease chytridiomycosis, caused by the pathogenic fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd, Longcore et al. 1999), is well known as a major threat to amphibians resulting in mass die-offs and population declines throughout the world (Berger et al. 1998; Blaustein and Keisecker 2002; Daszak et al. 2003; McCallum 2005; Rachowicz et al. 2006). Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis has been detected on amphibians from sites across North America (Ouellet et al. 2005; Woodhams et al. 2008) and appears to be most prevalent in the western and the northeastern United States (Longcore et al. 2007; Schlaepfer et al. 2007). Whereas infected anurans also have been found throughout the southeastern US (Green and Dodd 2007), there have been no reports of Bd from amphibians in eastern Texas, a broad area encompassing 10,000,000 ha. We sampled amphibians for the presence of Bd in four National Forests in eastern Texas (approximately 31°N latitude).