Papers in the Biological Sciences


Date of this Version



Somma, L. A. 2019. The value of inspection stations for detecting nonindigenous species lacking agricultural significance: The Mexican Treefrog, Smilisca baudinii Complex (Duméril and Bibron 1841) (Hylidae), interdicted in Florida, USA, from a shipment of peppers. Reptiles & Amphibians 26(2):163-164.


Copyright © 2019. Louis A. Somma. All rights reserved.


A Mexican Treefrog, Smilisca baudinii, a nonindigenous species, was interdicted for the first time from an imported shipment of peppers. The value of agriculture inspection stations used to make these interdictions is discussed. This is a single cargo interception (Stage 1: Colautti and MacIsaac 2004) and the first record for S. baudinii intercepted in Florida. Currently no evidence suggests that S. baudinii has been successfully introduced into and established in Florida, although this species could survive climatic conditions in the southern part of the state and at the scheduled destination of this shipment.

Cargo transport of alien species is a burgeoning problem in an age of intense, escalating global commerce. Intercepting S. baudinii in cargo underscores the value of frequent state agency inspections of agricultural shipping trucks for preventing introductions of nontarget species that are not considered agricultural pests, but potentially could become invasive and have unforeseen negative impacts on the environment. Currently such interceptions can be serendipitous for organisms not specifically listed as pests.