Small-mouthed salamander, Ambystoma texanmn, ecology, life history, Iowa, endangered species management
Selected aspects of the life history and ecology of the small-mouthed salamander (Ambystoma texanum Matthes) relevant to the management of this threatened species in Iowa are presented. The population studied utilizes flooded woodland habitat during courtship, breeding and egg laying, and during the entire larval period. Larval foraging strategies in this habitat included ontogenetic but no diel shifts in prey selection. Synchronous, nocturnal breeding migration allowed effective use of drift fences fur capture of adults used in captive breeding, courtship behavior studies, and the estimation of breeding population size. Large numbers of spennatophores, apparently indiscriminate mate choice, and the relatively large number of eggs produced by females makes captive breeding programs potentially very successful. Because larvae are particularly vulnerable to predation by fish and larval tiger salamanders, ephemeral ponds are required for breeding and larval habitat. The primary management objective should be to preserve ephemeral woodland ponds and adjacent terrestrial habitat favorable for larval and adult survival.
Journal of the Iowa Academy of Science
© Copyright 1988 by the Iowa Academy of Science, Inc.
McWilliams, Scott R. and Bachmann, Marilyn D.
"Using Life History and Ecology as Tools to Manage a Threatened Salamander Species,"
The Journal of the Iowa Academy of Science: JIAS: Vol. 95:
, Article 9.
Available at: http://scholarworks.uni.edu/jias/vol95/iss2/9