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Habitat Use by Small Vertebrates at Two Water Developments in Southwestern Arizona

Tricia L. Cutler and Michael L. Morrison
The Southwestern Naturalist
Vol. 43, No. 2 (Jun., 1998), pp. 155-162
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/30055351
Page Count: 8
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Habitat Use by Small Vertebrates at Two Water Developments in Southwestern Arizona
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Abstract

Water developments on the Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge, Arizona, have not been adequately monitored for use by wildlife. We used pitfall trapping for herpetofauna, livetrapping for rodents, and transect surveys for birds to determine the small vertebrate species present and their use of three vegetation types at two water developments in 1994 and 1995. We observed 187 species of vertebrates, the majority (80%) of which were bird species. Although one water development was dry throughout the study, there was no difference in the species richness or abundance of reptiles or rodents between sites. Bird species richness and abundance was greater at the site with free-standing water. Although small mammal and reptile species used all vegetation types at each site, bird species primarily used the mesquite (Prosopis velutina) trees at the center of each site. We believe that birds and amphibians benefit from the construction of such sites to a greater extent than reptiles or rodents. /// Fuentes artificiles de agua en el refugio nacional Cabeza Prieta, Arizona, no han sido adecuadamente monitoreadas de acuerdo con su uso por la vida silvestre. Usamos huecos como trampas para herptofauna, trampas vivas para roedores y sensos en transectos para aves para determinar la presencia de vertebrados pequefios y el uso por éstos de tres tipos de vegetación en dos fuentes artificiales de agua en 1994 y 1995. Observamos 187 especies de vertebrados, la mayoría (80%) de los cuales fueron especies de aves. Aunque una fuente de agua artificial estuvo seca durante todo el estudio, no hubo diferencia en el número de especies o abundancia de reptiles o roedores entre los sitios. La riqueza de especies de aves y su abundancia fue mayor en el sitio con agua. Aunque mamiferos pequefios y especies de reptiles usaron todos los tipos de vegetación en ambos sitios, especies de aves usaron principalmente los árboles de mesquita (Prosopis velutina) en el centro de cada sitio. Creemos que aves y amfibios se benefician miLs de fuentes artificiales de agua que los reptiles o roedores.

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