Todd W. Pierson and Elijah C. White
The patch-nosed salamander (Urspelerpes brucei) is a geographically restricted plethodontid salamander known only from approximately 20 km2 in the Tugaloo Mosaic of Georgia and South Carolina. All of the 17 documented localities are in first- and second-order streams in or near the Brevard Fault Zone and Tugaloo River. Here, we use environmental DNA surveys to test for the presence of the patch-nosed salamander in two regions of potential occupancy in North Carolina: 1) the Brevard Fault Zone in Gorges State Park; and 2) the Upper Chattooga River. We collected three 1L samples from each of 19 streams, but we failed to detect the patch-nosed salamander with any sample. Our results provide additional evidence that this species is likely restricted to the small region from which it is currently known.
Key Words.— amphibian, Appalachian, Brevard Fault, Chattooga River, eDNA, plethodontid