Filling a gap in the distribution of Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis: Evidence in amphibians from northern China

Wei Zhu, Liqing Fan, Claudio Soto-Azat, Shaofei Yan, Xu Gao, Xuan Liu, Supen Wang, Conghui Liu, Xuejiao Yang, Yiming Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Chytridiomycosis caused by Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) has been recognized as a major driver of amphibian declines worldwide. Central and northern Asia remain as the greatest gap in the knowledge of the global distribution of Bd. In China, Bd has recently been recorded from south and central regions, but areas in the north remain poorly surveyed. In addition, a recent increase in amphibian farming and trade has put this region at high risk for Bd in - troduction. To investigate this, we collected a total of 1284 non-invasive skin swabs from wild and captive anurans and caudates, including free-ranging, farmed, ornamental, and museumpreserved amphibians. Bd was detected at low prevalence (1.1%, 12 of 1073) in live wild amphi - bians, representing the first report of Bd infecting anurans from remote areas of northwestern China. We were unable to obtain evidence of the historical presence of Bd from museum amphi - bians (n = 72). Alarmingly, Bd was not detected in wild amphibians from the provinces of northeastern China (>700 individuals tested), but was widely present (15.1%, 21 of 139) in amphibians traded in this region. We suggest that urgent implementation of measures is required to reduce the possibility of further spread or inadvertent introduction of Bd to China. It is unknown whether Bd in northern China belongs to endemic and/or exotic genotypes, and this should be the focus of future research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)259-266
Number of pages8
JournalDiseases of Aquatic Organisms
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 30 Mar 2016


  • Andrias davidianus
  • Asia
  • Chytridiomycosis
  • Museum specimens

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Aquatic Science


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