Changes in capture rates and body size among vertebrate species occupying an insular urban habitat reserve

Conservation Science and Practice
By: , and 

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Abstract

Long‐term ecological monitoring provides valuable and objective scientific information to inform management and decision‐making. In this article, we analyze 22 years of herpetofauna monitoring data from the Point Loma Ecological Conservation Area (PLECA), an insular urban reserve near San Diego, CA. Our analysis showed that counts of individuals for one of the four most common terrestrial vertebrates declined, whereas counts for other common species increased or remained stable. Two species exhibited declines in adult body length, whereas biomass pooled over the five most common species increased over time and was associated with higher wet season precipitation. Although the habitat and vegetation at PLECA have remained protected and intact, we suspect that changes in arthropod communities may be driving changes in the abundance, growth, and development of insectivorous lizards. This study underscores the value of long‐term monitoring for establishing quantitative baselines to assess biological changes that would otherwise go undetected.

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Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Changes in capture rates and body size among vertebrate species occupying an insular urban habitat reserve
Series title Conservation Science and Practice
DOI 10.1111/csp2.245
Edition Online First
Year Published 2020
Language English
Publisher Wiley
Contributing office(s) Fort Collins Science Center, Western Ecological Research Center
Country United States
State California
Other Geospatial Point Loma Peninsula
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