Biological Invasions

, Volume 12, Issue 9, pp 2979–2983

The invasive bullfrog Lithobates catesbeianus in oases of Baja California Sur, Mexico: potential effects in a fragile ecosystem


    • Centro de Investigaciones Biológicas del Noroeste
  • Ricardo Rodríguez-Estrella
    • Centro de Investigaciones Biológicas del Noroeste
    • Estación Biológica de Doñana
Invasion Note

DOI: 10.1007/s10530-010-9713-z

Cite this article as:
Luja, V.H. & Rodríguez-Estrella, R. Biol Invasions (2010) 12: 2979. doi:10.1007/s10530-010-9713-z


The American bullfrog (Lithobates catesbeianus), considered as one of the world’s worst invasive species because of its negative effects on native fauna, has been introduced into over 40 countries in four continents. The invasion status in Mexico is poorly known. The first known record for this species in the Peninsula of Baja California, northwestern Mexico is an individual collected 35 years ago. A great portion of the peninsula is an arid desert where the sources of freshwater are the spring-fed oasis and mountain arroyos that support rare and endemic species closely associated with wetland conditions. Humans, who have introduced alien species, inhabit many of those oases. The aim of this work was to document the presence of the exotic bullfrog in 40 oases and mountain arroyos in Baja California Sur state during 2006–2009. Bullfrogs were found in 25% of the oases sampled; 15% have confirmed records of breeding populations and five oases are new location records. Our results show a considerable increase (50%) in the number of oasis invaded by bullfrogs in only 8 years. The animal populations of rare or endemic species associated with oases would be threatened by the arrival of bullfrogs. Actions for their control and eradication are urgently needed.


American bullfrog Exotic Invasive Mexico Oasis Baja California Sur



The state of Baja California Sur


The Peninsula of Baja California

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010