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.

 ISSN 0268-0130

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pdf 01. Establishment of populations of the common frog, Rana temporaria, and common toad, Bufo bufo, in a newly created reserve following translocation


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Authors: A. S. Cooke And R. S. Oldham

Abstract: The establishment of large populations of common frogs Rana temporaria and common toads Bufo bufo was monitored for six years in a newly-created reserve, following stocking with spawn of both species and with toads rescued from a site to be destroyed. Frog spawn output reached a peak three years after the initial introduction. There was high mortality and/or emigration (64% loss) during the first year following translocation of over 5,000 adult male toads. Thereafter male mortality decreased and/or site fidelity increased: 39% loss year 2 to 3, 42% loss year 3 to 4. Comparable data were not available for the 795 females translocated, but there is no reason to believe their mortality was lower. Transfer of spawn is probably more effective as a means of establishing a new population of toads than transfer of adults. Counts of male toads peaked after three years, but delayed sexual maturity of females meant that counts of pairs and estimates of spawn output continued to increase for about six years. Age determination in a sample of 4] male toads showed that length was significantly related to age, but there were some notably disparate rates of growth. A sample of 16 females showed no correlation between age and length. The greatest recorded losses of naturally-laid spawn of both species (up to 1 6% in one year for the frog and 39% for the toad) were due to desiccation, presumed collection by people and fungal infestation.

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Please note that as from Volume 31 Number 1 (January 2021) on, the Herpetological Journal will be available as an online publication only - the last print edition will be Volume 30 Number 4.   

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