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Behavior-based scale definitions for determining individual space use: requirements of two amphibians


Indermaur, L; Gehring, M; Wehrle, W; Tockner, K; Naef-Daenzer, B (2009). Behavior-based scale definitions for determining individual space use: requirements of two amphibians. American Naturalist, 173(1):60-71.

Abstract

Understanding individual space use remains a major issue in ecology, and it is complicated by definitions of spatial scale and the interplay of multiple factors. We quantified the effect of habitat and biotic and individual factors on space use by amphibians (Bufo bufo spinosus [BB] and Bufo viridis [BV]) that were radio-tracked in their terrestrial summer habitat. We analyzed two spatial scales, 50% core areas and 95% home ranges (excluding 50% core areas), thought to represent resting and foraging areas, respectively. The 50% core area of BB was best explained by habitat structure and prey density, whereas the 50% core area of BV was determined solely by habitat structure. This suggests that the resting and foraging areas of BB are not spatially separated. The 95% home range of BB was determined by prey density, while for BV both habitat structure and prey density determined home range size. We conclude that the terrestrial area requirements of amphibians depend on the productivity and spatiotemporal complexity of landscapes and that differential space use may facilitate their co-occurrence. Behavior-based a priori hypotheses, in combination with an information-theoretic approach and path analyses, provide a promising framework to disentangle factors that govern individual space use, thereby advancing home range studies.

Abstract

Understanding individual space use remains a major issue in ecology, and it is complicated by definitions of spatial scale and the interplay of multiple factors. We quantified the effect of habitat and biotic and individual factors on space use by amphibians (Bufo bufo spinosus [BB] and Bufo viridis [BV]) that were radio-tracked in their terrestrial summer habitat. We analyzed two spatial scales, 50% core areas and 95% home ranges (excluding 50% core areas), thought to represent resting and foraging areas, respectively. The 50% core area of BB was best explained by habitat structure and prey density, whereas the 50% core area of BV was determined solely by habitat structure. This suggests that the resting and foraging areas of BB are not spatially separated. The 95% home range of BB was determined by prey density, while for BV both habitat structure and prey density determined home range size. We conclude that the terrestrial area requirements of amphibians depend on the productivity and spatiotemporal complexity of landscapes and that differential space use may facilitate their co-occurrence. Behavior-based a priori hypotheses, in combination with an information-theoretic approach and path analyses, provide a promising framework to disentangle factors that govern individual space use, thereby advancing home range studies.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Department of Plant and Microbial Biology
Dewey Decimal Classification:580 Plants (Botany)
Language:English
Date:January 2009
Deposited On:13 Mar 2009 15:43
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 12:58
Publisher:University of Chicago Press
ISSN:0003-0147
Additional Information:© 2009 by "The American Naturalist"
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1086/593355
PubMed ID:19063672

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