Numbers of the endangered Key Largo woodrat (KLWR; Neotoma floridana smalli) have been declining for at least 25 yr. The raccoon (Procyon lotor) roundworm, Baylisascaris procyonis, has been found to have an adverse effect on the survival of Alleghany woodrats (N. magister). High densities of raccoons can exacerbate this problem by increasing the amount of feces containing viable eggs of B. procyonis available to woodrats. In 2002, 64 fecal samples were collected and examined for eggs of B. procyonis from >32 raccoons within the KLWR's known range on Key Largo, Florida, USA. All samples were negative for eggs of B. procyonis. Raccoon density in this area was approximately 0.62 raccoons/ha. Despite this high density of raccoons, B. procyonis does not appear to be a threat to the KLWR population.
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Vol. 41 • No. 1