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Reproductive Ecology of a Population of the California Tiger Salamander

Ivette Loredo and Dirk van Vuren
Copeia
Vol. 1996, No. 4 (Dec. 27, 1996), pp. 895-901
DOI: 10.2307/1447651
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1447651
Page Count: 7
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Reproductive Ecology of a Population of the California Tiger Salamander
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Abstract

We studied breeding migrations and variation in reproductive traits of the California tiger salamander, Ambystoma californiense, in Contra Costa County, California over two winter breeding seasons and three summer metamorphosis seasons (1992-1994). Initiation of adult breeding migrations followed major storm systems; in both 1993 and 1994, males arrived at the breeding pond first and stayed longer than females. Breeding population sizes of males and females varied annually and appeared to be determined by different mechanisms. Within a season, variation in weekly numbers of migrating adults was attributable only to rainfall; variation in numbers of emigrating juveniles could not be attributed to any measured environmental parameters. Sexual dimorphism in adults is expressed through longer tails in males. Annual numbers of juveniles produced varied substantially, ranging from over 1000 metamorphs in 1992 to only three in 1994. Timing and mean size at metamorphosis showed substantial annual variation.

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