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Establishment of the exotic invasive Cuban treefrog (Osteopilus septentrionalis) in Louisiana


The Cuban treefrog, Osteopilus septentrionalis, is native to Cuba, the Bahamas, and the Cayman Islands, and is invasive in areas where it has been introduced and established in the Caribbean as well as Florida. Despite repeated occurrences in several states over many years, it was not believed that Cuban treefrogs had successfully established outside of Florida in the mainland United States. From mid-September to mid-November 2017, we captured and removed 367 Cuban treefrogs in just four surveys in New Orleans, Louisiana. The impacts of this population on native treefrogs in this area is unknown but possibly severe as indicated by the paucity of observations of native treefrogs during our surveys. Eradication of this seemingly established population is improbable, but continued surveys will facilitate learning about the ecology and genetics of this novel population.

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We thank Dominique Fleitas for field assistance. Animals were captured under Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Scientific Collecting Permit LNHP-17-044. All handling of animals was conducted in accordance with approved IACUC protocols (USGS WARC FY2008-1). Any use of trade, firm, or product names is for descriptive purposes only and does not imply endorsement by the U.S. Government. This is contribution number 624 of the U.S. Geological Survey Amphibian Research and Monitoring Initiative (ARMI).

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Correspondence to Brad M. Glorioso.

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Glorioso, B.M., Waddle, J.H., Muse, L.J. et al. Establishment of the exotic invasive Cuban treefrog (Osteopilus septentrionalis) in Louisiana. Biol Invasions 20, 2707–2713 (2018).

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  • Cuban treefrog
  • Urban invasion
  • Novel population
  • Competition
  • Thermal tolerance