Prevalence of Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in a Nicaraguan, micro-endemic Neotropical salamander, Bolitoglossa mombachoensis

Stark, Tariq; Laurijssens, Carlijn; Weterings, Martijn; Martel, An; Köhler, Gunther; Pasmans, Frank


Amphibians are the most threatened terrestrial vertebrates on the planet and are iconic in the global biodiversity crisis. Their global decline caused by the fungal agent Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) is well known. Declines of Mesoamerican salamanders of the family Plethodontidae, mainly affecting high elevation species, have equally been attributed to Bd. Here we report the prevalence of Bd in a population of a high elevation Bolitoglossa species in Nicaragua, since its description in 1999 until 2011 in the absence of any obvious population declines. Our findings show a low prevalence in an environmental context where pathogen driven declines would be expected to occur.