The Effects of Elevation on Pseudacris maculata Presence in Rocky Mountain National Park
Boreal chorus frog populations are declining rapidly due to habitat loss, disease, and invasive species, which will be compounded by climate change. The changing environment of the planet has led to an increasing variability in temperature and precipitation, which has caused a negative impact on individual amphibian metamorphosis and growth. Elevation is an environmental variable that has been studied widely, however it can be hard to tease apart the effects of elevation in comparison to climate change. Pseudacris maculata populations are distributed at various elevations, but it is unclear if this is due to elevation preference or in response to climate change. This study aims to investigate if there is a connection between elevation and amphibian presence, specifically proposing that increasing elevation would have a negative effect on the presence of P. maculata in Rocky Mountain National Park. This research was carried out using double visual encounter surveys at various sites in the park with elevation and presence recorded at each site. The binomial linear regression analysis run showed no significant results. Elevation did not have an impact on P. maculata presence, and although there was a negative correlation between P. maculata and elevation, the result was not statistically significant. Future climate change consequences indicate a continued rapid population decline, with high mortality and stunted growth in P. maculata.
1 Broadside. 48"W x 36"H
Kalamazoo, Mich. : Kalamazoo College
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