The first complete field guide to the exotic amphibians and reptiles established in the continental United States and Hawaii, this volume covers 74 species that are not native to the country and 29 species that are native but occur beyond their original geographic range. Dispersed from their former habitats by human activity, many of these species are invasive in their new environments, causing ecological or economic harm.
Ideal for naturalists of all levels, Exotic Amphibians and Reptiles of the United States details each species' taxonomy, distribution, history, and ecology and portrays each one with vibrant photographs. Drawing on county-level distribution maps from 2,908 published records, this guide provides an in-depth understanding of local factors that drive the success of exotic species. It connects species-specific information to conservation issues as it explores human causes of exotic and invasive establishment. The book also includes eight invited essays which provide regional perspectives on scientific, economic, and management-related aspects of this phenomenon.
As ecological pressures on native species and habitats increase, understanding the histories and roles of exotic species is becoming more and more important for conservation efforts. Providing practical identification skills and an awareness of the environmental impacts of these amphibians and reptiles, this indispensable guide equips readers to confront the unusual biodiversity crisis of exotic species.
Walter E. Meshaka Jr. is senior curator of the Section of Zoology and Botany at the State Museum of Pennsylvania. He is co-author of The Exotic Amphibians and Reptiles of Florida. Suzanne L. Collins is a wildlife photographer and coauthor of Amphibians, Reptiles, and Turtles in Kansas. R. Bruce Bury is a scientist emeritus at the U.S. Geological Survey. He is editor-in-chief of the journal Herpetological Conservation and Biology. Malcolm L. McCallum is a research scientist in the Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources at Langston University. He is the managing editor of the journal Herpetological Conservation and Biology.
"A comprehensive, one-of-a-kind guidebook detailing the exotic reptiles and amphibians established in the United States. A valuable resource for researchers, educators, land managers, and federal and state agencies and NGOs that care for wildlife and the environment."
– Richard Engeman, research statistician and research biologist, National Wildlife Research Center
"In a single volume, the authors have compiled identification, range, ecology, and introductory historical information for all known herpetofauna across the United States. An essential tool in the reference library of any herpetologist, citizen scientist, or natural resource manager."
– Daniel D. Fogell, author of A Field Guide to the Amphibians and Reptiles of Nebraska