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Monday, January 25 • 10:40am - 11:00am
Conspecific Attraction In Anuran Amphibians

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AUTHORS: Valerie L. Buxton, University of Illinois; Michael P. Ward, University of Illinois, Illinois Natural History Survey; Jinelle H. Sperry, University of Illinois, Engineer Research and Development Center

ABSTRACT: Conspecific cues may influence the habitat selection process in certain species. In anurans, conspecific acoustic cues may facilitate the location of new breeding ponds, but experimental evidence supporting this notion is lacking. In 2014 and 2015, we conducted an experimental field study on several anuran species including Cope’s gray treefrogs Hyla chrysoscelis, American toads Anaxyrus americanus, wood frogs Lithobates sylvaticus, and spring peepers Pseudacris crucifer to determine whether anurans use acoustic cues to select breeding habitat. We broadcast conspecific chorus sounds at artificial ponds with no prior history of colonization by our target species. We found that acoustic cues were effective in attracting certain species to ponds, such as H. chrysoscelis, but were not effective at attracting other species, such as A. americanus. This study provides some of the first rigorous experimental field evidence regarding the use of conspecific cues for location of new breeding habitat and may have valuable applications to amphibian conservation and management.

Monday January 25, 2016 10:40am - 11:00am
Vandenberg A

Attendees (9)