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Document Type

Research Project Report: Ecology

First Page

17

Last Page

28

Abstract

Introduced American Bullfrogs (Lithobates catesbeianus) have been present in Grand Teton National Park since approximately the 1950s, but little is known about their distribution and potential impacts. In this study, we surveyed the current bullfrog distribution and spatial overlap with sympatric native amphibians in the park, and characterized post-metamorphic bullfrog diets from July – September 2015. Despite surveys in multiple large rivers and floodplain habitats, we only documented bullfrogs in a geothermal pond and 5 km of stream channel immediately downstream of this pond. In these waters, bullfrogs overlapped with native amphibians at the downstream end of their distribution, and we did not document native amphibians in bullfrog stomach contents. Larger bullfrogs (SVL ≥ 96 mm) primarily consumed native rodents (especially meadow voles, Microtus pennsylvanicus), while smaller bullfrogs frequently consumed native invertebrates and less frequently consumed non-native invertebrates and fish. Taken together, these data indicate that the distribution and implications of the bullfrog invasion in Grand Teton National Park are currently localized to a small area, so these bullfrogs should therefore be vulnerable to eradication.

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