Amphibian and reptile communities associated with beaver (castor canadensis) ponds and unimpounded streams in the piedmont of south carolina

Kevin R. Russell, Christopher E. Moorman, J. Kenneth Edwards, Brian S. Metts, David C. Guynn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

23 Scopus citations

Abstract

We used drift fence arrays with pitfall traps to compare amphibian and reptile assemblages at the peripheries of beaver (Castor canadensis) ponds of two age-classes (“new”: ≤ 5 yr old, and “old”: ≥ 10 yr old) and unimpounded streams in the Piedmont of South Carolina. The richness and total abundance of amphibians were not significantly different among new beaver ponds, old beaver ponds, and unimpounded streams, although several species of anurans were captured predominantly or exclusively at beaver ponds. Amphibian community overlap and diversity also were similar among the three habitats. In contrast, the richness and total abundance of reptiles were significantly higher at old beaver ponds when compared to new beaver ponds and unimpounded streams. The degree of reptile community overlap also was relatively low, with significant differences in diversity among all three habitats. Differences in amphibian and reptile community attributes between beaver ponds and unimpounded streams likely were related to the lentic or lotic habitat requirements of individual species and the effects of beaver impoundments on surrounding upland habitats.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)149-158
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Freshwater Ecology
Volume14
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Aquatic Science

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