News: Active surveillance activities in the Northeast U.S.


A nationwide investigation led by the USGS Amphibian Research and Monitoring Initiative (ARMI) is being undertaken to determine whether Bsal is present in wild amphibian populations in the United States. Early detection of the fungus, if it is present, is crucial for implementing mitigation strategies to prevent spread and developing a better understanding of the risk to native populations. Accordingly, sampling will focus on the species shown to be most vulnerable to infection in laboratory trials, the eastern red-spotted newt (Notophthalmus viridescens). Locations of sampling effort will be stratied according to the risk of Bsal introduction, which will maximize the probability of detecting the fungus if it is already present in wild populations. Effort will focus on up to 20 isolated wetlands on state and federal properties where native species with populations expected to contain >30 individuals are most likely to be found, and we will begin our sampling at sites with known populations of native species. Sampling in 2016 will occur in: CT, ME, MD, MA, NH, NJ, NY, PA, and VA.