The British Herpetological Society

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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pdf 01. Migratory behaviour during autumn and hibernation site selection in common frogs (Rana temporaria) at high altitude

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pp. 121-124
Authors: Ludwig, Gerda; Sinsch, Ulrich & Pelster, Bernd

Abstract: Aquatic and terrestrial hibernation have both been reported for Rana temporaria, but it is as yet unclear which factors influence hibernation site choice. To investigate the hibernation behaviour of common frogs in alpine regions, we fitted 15 adult R. temporaria with radio transmitters in September 2011, and located them once a week over a 10 week period to their hibernation sites. The mean distance animals travelled between relocations was 19.4 m (SE=4.1). There was no difference in migratory behaviour between males and females. Distance moved between relocations was significantly influenced by season. Aquatic hibernation prevailed in our study population. One frog hibernated in a pond, seven in streams or springs and none in terrestrial microhabitats. Our results suggest that the onset of hibernation in common frogs is regulated by a combination of seasonal factors rather than temperature alone.

Keywords: MIGRATORY BEHAVIOUR, HIBERNATION SITE SELECTION, RANA TEMPORARIA, AMPHIBIANS, RADIO TELEMETRY

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