Master's Theses



Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Amphibians are one of the most threatened groups of organisms worldwide. Introduction of non-native predators and habitat destruction, degradation, and fragmentation can be attributed to many declines. However, declines in protected areas might be due to the emergence of novel diseases such as ranavirus and chytridiomycosis. Chytridiomycosis has been implicated in the decline of many species world-wide, including the decline of Boreal Toads and Yellow-Legged Frogs in North America. Chytridiomycosis is caused by the fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, or “chytrid”. Chytrid has been detected in Colorado, Nebraska, and Oklahoma, and was first reported in two counties in south-central Kansas in 2014. The objectives of my study was to further assess the presence of chytrid throughout the state and assess aspects of anuran life history that might increase the potential for infection with chytrid. In cooperation with Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism, surveys were conducted spring 2015– spring 2017 to collect swab samples from anurans in Kansas. I sent samples to Research Associates Lab (Dallas, TX) for analysis by real-time PCR to detect the presence of chytrid in swab samples. Chytrid was detected at six sample locations across six species. I was unable to assess the potential influence of life history due to low frequencies of chytrid occurrence. I suggest continued monitoring of anuran populations to ensure population health into the future.


Dr. William Stark

Date of Award

Fall 2017

Document Type



© The Author(s)


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