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Modeling potential river management conflicts between frogs and salmonidsAuthor(s): Steven F. Railsback; Bret C. Harvey; Sarah J. Kupferberg; Margaret M. Lang; Scott McBain; Hart H. Welsh
Source: Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences. 73(5): 773-784
Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
Station: Pacific Southwest Research Station
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DescriptionManagement of regulated rivers for yellow-legged frogs (Rana boylii) and salmonids exemplifies potential conflicts among species adapted to different parts of the natural flow and temperature regimes. Yellow-legged frogs oviposit in rivers in spring and depend on declining flows and warming temperatures for egg and tadpole survival and growth, whereas salmonid management can include high spring flows and low-temperature reservoir releases. We built a model of how flow and temperature affect frog breeding success. Its mechanisms include adults selecting oviposition sites to balance risks of egg dewatering by decreasing flow versus scouring by high flow, temperature effects on development, habitat selection by tadpoles, and mortality via dewatering and scouring. In simulations of a regulated river managed primarily for salmonids, below-natural temperatures delayed tadpole metamorphosis into froglets, which can reduce overwinter survival. However, mitigating this impact via higher temperatures was predicted to cause adults to oviposit before spring flow releases for salmonids, which then scoured the egg masses. The relative timing of frog oviposition and high flow releases appears critical in determining conflicts between salmonid and frog management.
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CitationRailsback, Steven F.; Harvey, Bret C.; Kupferberg, Sarah J.; Lang, Margaret M.; McBain, Scott; Welsh, Hart H. 2016. Modeling potential river management conflicts between frogs and salmonids. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences. 73(5): 773-784.
Keywordsflow regime, frogs, individual-based modeling, Rana boylii, regulated rivers, river management, salmon, temperature regime
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