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University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Publication Date

Spring 2004

Program Name

Brazil: Amazon Resource Management and Human Ecology

Abstract

Deforestation in the Amazon has become a serious conservation issue. The process of destruction of primary forest results in the creation of secondary forest that differs from primary forest in a number of important ways. Anurans (frogs and toads) are one group that may be affected by the loss of primary forest and creation of secondary forest areas, and are an important focus for conservation efforts. Previous studies on anuran reactions to loss of primary forest have been few and inconclusive. This study examined anuran species richness in an area of primary and secondary forest in order to determine whether the successional state of a forest affects the number of species and the types of species present in each area. The methods of audio-strip transects and visual encounter surveys were used to sample anuran species richness in primary and secondary forest in the municipality of São Francisco do Pará, Brazil. A total of 16 species were found in 28 man-hours of sampling, of which ten were found in the primary forest and eight in the secondary forest, resulting in no significant difference between the two forest areas in terms of species numbers. There was however a very low index of similarity between the two sites, suggesting that, although the total number of species was similar, the sites differed in terms of which species were present. Thus, anurans may be affected by the increasing destruction of primary forest and its replacement by secondary forest, and this must be kept in mind for future conservation efforts.

Disciplines

Animal Sciences | Natural Resources and Conservation

 

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