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Factors Affecting Salamander Density and Distribution within Four Forest Types in Southern Appalachian MountainsAuthor(s): Craig A. Harper; David C. Guynn
Source: Forest Ecology and Management 114 (1999) 245-252
Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication
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DescriptionWe used a terrestrial vacuum to sample known area plots in order to obtain density estimates of salamanders and their primary prey, invertebrates of the forest floor. We sampled leaf litter and measured various vegetative and topographic parameters within four forest types (oak-pine, oak-hickory, mixed mesophytic and northern hardwoods) and three age classes (0-12,13- 39, and >40 years) over two field seasons within the Wine Spring Creek Ecosystem Management area in western North Carolina. We found salamanders preferred moist microsites across all forest types with the highest salamander densities occuning on sites with a northern and/or eastern exposure and within northern hardwood forests. Salamander densities were lowest on 0-12-year plots, yet were equal on 13-39 and l0-year plots, suggestiug a much quicker recovery from the impact of clearcutting than reported by previous researchers. Overall invertebrate densities did not influence salamander density or distribution although, plots in which salamanders were captured, harbored significantly higher numbers of snails than plots in which salamanders were not captured. We discuss the importance of calcium to salamanders and snails as a possible source thereof.
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CitationHarper, Craig A.; Guynn, David C., Jr. 1999. Factors Affecting Salamander Density and Distribution within Four Forest Types in Southern Appalachian Mountains. Forest Ecology and Management 114 (1999) 245-252
KeywordsSalamander density, Invertebrate density, Southem Appalachian Mountains, Terrestrial vacuum
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