The Herpetological Journal is the Society's prestigious quarterly scientific journal. Articles are listed in Biological Abstracts, Current Awareness in Biological Sciences,Current Contents, Science Citation Index, and Zoological Record.
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Authors: Zhang, Lixia; Lu, Youqiang; Lu, Xin & Chen, Xiaohong
Abstract: Feirana taihangnicus is a stream-living frog endemic to central China. We determined the demography of a population from north Henan province using skeletochronology. Males were smaller than females (67.1 ± 1.0 and 77.8 ± 1.0 mm snout vent length, respectively), and began reproduction earlier after metamorphosis (2 and 3 years of age, respectively). Accordingly, males attained younger ages (mean age 5.5 ± 0.3 compared to 6.3 ± 0.2 years in females), reached a shorter maximum lifespan (9 years compared to 10 years in females) and grew at a faster rate (von Bertalanffy's growth coefficient: 0.25 compared to 0.16 in females). Because tadpoles take 2–3 years to complete metamorphosis, these data suggest that F. taihangnicus spends at least 5–6 years between the egg stage and reaching adult. The slow life history and resultant low population turnover rates highlight a conservation concern for this high-elevation species.
Keywords: LIFE HISTORY, SKELETOCHRONOLOGICAL AGE, PROTECTION, BODY SIZE, FEIRANA TAIHANGNICUS