Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans: Building an Understanding of Invasion Threat in North America with Conservation Partners

Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans (Bsal) is a recently discovered fungal pathogen from Asia that is emerging and causing salamander declines in Europe. Unregulated trade of infected non-native salamanders is believed to be the route of entry. North America is home to the greatest diversity of salamanders in the world. Currently, no regulations exist in North America that require pathogen-free trade of amphibians. Estimates of trade volume and pathogen prevalence suggest that thousands of Bsal-infected salamanders could have already crossed U.S. borders, although to date, no positive Bsal detections have occurred. Risk models developed by the U.S. Geological Survey based on environmental suitability suggest that the likelihood of Bsal invasion in North America is high. However, these and other risk analyses have not taken into consideration the susceptibility of amphibian host species, which could affect Bsal invasion potential. Leer más.