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 07. Canalization of Size at Metamorphosis Despite Temperature and Density Variations in Pelodytes punctatus


Open Access

pp. 45-50
Authors: Joly, Pierre; Morand, Alain; Plénet, Sandrine & Grolet, Odile

Abstract: We investigated variation in length of larval period and size at metamorphosis in Pelodytes punctatus in response to temperature and density. Experiments followed a 3 × 2 factorial design, with density and temperature as fixed factors. Length of the larval period was very sensitive to temperature. Although significant, size at metamorphosis showed less variation. Density did not strongly affect the studied variables. No trade-off between length of larval period and size at metamorphosis was detected, even when a trend was perceptible at low density. Pelodytes punctatus differs from most other European species of tailless amphibian with regard to these traits, but is similar to Bombina variegata. These two species both belong to taxa of ancient origin, but also use habitats in the early stages of ecological succession (e.g. those following physical disturbance). Further studies are required to distinguish the influence of phylogenetic factors from those ecological factors that drive the evolution of such biological traits.



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