Creating Habitat Reserves for Migratory Salamanders

Suzanne C. Fowle and Scott M. Melvin

in Amphibian Declines

Published by University of California Press

Published in print June 2005 | ISBN: 9780520235922
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520929432 | DOI:
Creating Habitat Reserves for Migratory Salamanders

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Habitat fragmentation results in the reduction and isolation of amphibian populations and the subsequent increased risk of local extinction. While local extinctions are often part of amphibian population dynamics, amphibian populations persist because such extirpations are compensated for by recolonization and the resulting rescue effect. However, the fragmentation of amphibian habitats inhibits dispersal and thereby hinders or prevents the rescue effect. Massachusetts provides a prime example of this conservation challenge and of the need to protect connected habitat complexes for amphibians, especially for migratory salamanders. An effective strategy for statewide conservation of ambystomatids involves proactive protection of habitats, rather than solely relying on regulations. Initially, the effectiveness of habitat reserves and the process of designing them may be limited by a lack of empirical data to guide efforts. Due to limited information on upland habitat use and dispersal distances of these animals, there is a certain degree of uncertainty in designing reserves for ambystomatids.

Keywords: Massachusetts; habitats; habitat fragmentation; habitat reserves; conservation; migratory salamanders; ambystomatids; dispersal; habitat use

Chapter.  4034 words. 

Subjects: Zoology and Animal Sciences

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