Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog's site fidelity may lead to further decline

Date:
April 16, 2010
Source:
USDA Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station
Summary:
No longer found in 90 percent of its previously occupied habitat, the Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog is further threatened by cumulative impacts of a changing climate, introduced non-native trout and site fidelity habits, hampering the breeding success of this imperiled frog. New research underscores the need to incorporate the site fidelity habits of this frog when designing restoration strategies for its continued existence.

Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog.
Credit: Image courtesy of USDA Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station

USDA Forest Service researchers found that site fidelity, the tendency to return to previously occupied habitats, is strong in the Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog. Research showed how the cumulative effects of a changing climate and introduced non-native trout are negatively impacting the habitat of a species already gone from 90 percent of its historic localities, and will further stress frogs with strong site fidelity.

In a 10-year study using mark-recapture methods, Kathleen Matthews and Haiganoush Preisler quantified site fidelity of the frogs in a high elevation basin of Kings Canyon National Park and found that frogs were returning to breed in lakes that dry up after low snowpack years, killing all tadpoles, or to lakes where predation by introduced non-native trout reduced breeding success of frogs.

Site fidelity is usually an effective life history strategy, allowing efficient relocation of important breeding, feeding and overwintering habitats. Because of their short active season (3-5 months) in high elevation streams and lakes of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, site fidelity of the yellow-legged frog was probably historically advantageous. However, if a site deteriorates or has a new disturbance, e.g. lake drying or introduced trout, then frogs are returning to sites that can no longer sustain their life stages.

The frog requires perennial water for successful tadpole development, which can take up to 4 years, so when a lake dries, up to four year-classes of tadpoles are lost. Currently in the study area, the largest, deepest lake not susceptible to drawdown by snowpack variability is unfavorable for successful breeding because introduced non-native trout prey upon all life history stages of the frog.

The study notes that restoration projects that removed non-native trout respond with increased adult frog and tadpole abundance and underscores the need for incorporating site fidelity habits of this already imperiled frog into future restoration strategies.

The full article published in the Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences titled "Site fidelity of the declining amphibian Rana sierrae (Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog)" can be viewed at http://www.fs.fed.us/psw/publications/matthews/psw_2010_matthews001.pdf.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by USDA Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

USDA Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station. "Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog's site fidelity may lead to further decline." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 April 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/03/100311091613.htm>.
USDA Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station. (2010, April 16). Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog's site fidelity may lead to further decline. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/03/100311091613.htm
USDA Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station. "Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog's site fidelity may lead to further decline." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/03/100311091613.htm (accessed July 22, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Michigan Plant's Goal: Flower and Die

Michigan Plant's Goal: Flower and Die

AP (July 22, 2014) An 80-year-old agave plant, which is blooming for the first and only time at a University of Michigan conservatory, will die when it's done (July 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
San Diego Zoo Welcomes New, Rare Rhino Calf

San Diego Zoo Welcomes New, Rare Rhino Calf

Reuters - US Online Video (July 21, 2014) An endangered black rhino baby is the newest resident at the San Diego Zoo. Sasha Salama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Shark Sightings a Big Catch for Cape Tourism

Shark Sightings a Big Catch for Cape Tourism

AP (July 21, 2014) A rise in shark sightings along the shores of Chatham, Massachusetts is driving a surge of eager vacationers to the beach town looking to catch a glimpse of a great white. (July 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
$23.6 Billion Awarded To Widow In Smoking Lawsuit

$23.6 Billion Awarded To Widow In Smoking Lawsuit

Newsy (July 20, 2014) Cynthia Robinson claims R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company hid the health and addiction risks of its products, leading to the death of her husband in 1996. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins