Title

Forest Roads and Streams as Potential Barriers in Movement of Red-Backed Salamanders (Plethodon cinereus)

Item Type

Poster

Location

Elaine Langone Center, Terrace Room

Start Date

13-11-2015 8:00 PM

End Date

13-11-2015 9:59 PM

Description

Terrestrial salamanders are generally thought of as incapable of long-distance movement. However, there are records of individuals traveling up to 90 meters to return to their territory. Studies show that roads can be obstacles in salamander movement. The objective of our study is to examine forest roads and streams as potential barriers in the return of red-backed salamanders (RBS) to their territories. Such obstacles can inhibit movement in species with poor dispersal capability and greater sensitivity to habitat alteration. We hypothesize that the streams and roads will negatively affect the return rate of salamanders as compared to displacement of individuals into the forest. RBS, though abundant and widely distributed, are behaviorally and physiologically similar to other terrestrial species that may be susceptible to unfavorable effects from forest barriers. We began an experimental study at Camp Karoondinha in Millmont, PA in June 2015 to quantify recapture rates of RBS after displacement across roads and streams. All RBS collected within six cover board arrays were assigned to either the control, return to the cover board it was found under, or a treatment, displacement 25 or 50 meters through either the forest or across a road or stream. After data collection is complete (predicted fall 2016), we will compare return rates of RBS across treatments to better understand the effects of roads and streams on terrestrial salamander movement. We will also compare juvenile and adult movement patterns, hypothesizing that juveniles will return to their site of origin less often than adults due to dispersal in this life stage.

Language

eng

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Nov 13th, 8:00 PM Nov 13th, 9:59 PM

Forest Roads and Streams as Potential Barriers in Movement of Red-Backed Salamanders (Plethodon cinereus)

Elaine Langone Center, Terrace Room

Terrestrial salamanders are generally thought of as incapable of long-distance movement. However, there are records of individuals traveling up to 90 meters to return to their territory. Studies show that roads can be obstacles in salamander movement. The objective of our study is to examine forest roads and streams as potential barriers in the return of red-backed salamanders (RBS) to their territories. Such obstacles can inhibit movement in species with poor dispersal capability and greater sensitivity to habitat alteration. We hypothesize that the streams and roads will negatively affect the return rate of salamanders as compared to displacement of individuals into the forest. RBS, though abundant and widely distributed, are behaviorally and physiologically similar to other terrestrial species that may be susceptible to unfavorable effects from forest barriers. We began an experimental study at Camp Karoondinha in Millmont, PA in June 2015 to quantify recapture rates of RBS after displacement across roads and streams. All RBS collected within six cover board arrays were assigned to either the control, return to the cover board it was found under, or a treatment, displacement 25 or 50 meters through either the forest or across a road or stream. After data collection is complete (predicted fall 2016), we will compare return rates of RBS across treatments to better understand the effects of roads and streams on terrestrial salamander movement. We will also compare juvenile and adult movement patterns, hypothesizing that juveniles will return to their site of origin less often than adults due to dispersal in this life stage.