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Providing evidence to improve practice

Action: American bullfrog control: Direct removal of juveniles Control of Freshwater Invasive Species

Key messages

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  • One replicated study in Belgium found double fyke nets were effective in catching bullfrog tadpoles in small shallow ponds.
  • One before-and-after study in France found a significant reduction in the number of recorded adults and juveniles following the removal of juveniles by trapping, when carried out as part of a combination treatment.


Supporting evidence from individual studies


A replicated study in 2010 and 2011 across three sites in Belgium (Louette et al. 2014) found catchability of bullfrog tadpoles in small shallow ponds using one double fyke net for 24 h to be reasonably consistent at approximately 6%.  Bullfrog populations were investigated in ten permanently wet, small, shallow fish ponds (average surface area 1,500 m2; max depth 150 cm), across three sites.  In six water bodies (Hoogstraten and Arendonk), bullfrog tadpole population density was estimated.  In these ponds, a number of double fyke nets were set (parallel and two meters out from the shore) for 24 h, covering all sides of the water body. A minimum of three catch efforts of equal magnitude were performed. After every catch effort, all captured individuals were removed from the population.   To determine the accuracy of these population size estimates, calibration using seine netting was performed in two ponds.



A before-and-after study from 2006 to 2009 on Natural Park Périgord-Limousin sites in France (Guibert et al. 2010) found a significant reduction in the number of recorded adults and juveniles following the removal of juveniles by trapping, along with other removal methods.  The number of trapped tadpoles decreased from approximately 1,600 in 2006 to fewer than 200 in 2009.  Trapping was carried out as part of a combination treatment which also involved shooting of adults and collection of egg clutches.  Unbaited single and double entry traps were installed equidistant from each other in the water, and were checked daily until the catch rate became negligible compared to the work effort.

Referenced papers

Please cite as:

Aldridge, D., Ockendon, N., Rocha, R., Smith, R.K. & Sutherland, W.J. (2019) Some aspects of control of freshwater invasive species. Pages 569-602 in: W.J. Sutherland, L.V. Dicks, N. Ockendon, S.O. Petrovan & R.K. Smith (eds) What Works in Conservation 2019. Open Book Publishers, Cambridge, UK.