Populations of the threatened Growling Grass Frog Litoria raniformis in metropolitan Melbourne currently occur in human-made habitats and there is little information on their current status. We conducted systematic field surveys at 28 waterbodies within a population distributed over agricultural land in the Pakenham area, on the south-eastern urban-fringe of Melbourne, Victoria, during the 2005/06 breeding season. Our aim was to identify key areas for the conservation of L. raniformis. We recorded L . raniformis at 14 waterbodies where we marked 31 males and 16 females. Occupied waterbodies had a greater proportion of submerged vegetation, a higher pH, and were situated close to other occupied waterbodies, generally < 200 m. The adult male and female population size was estimated at 45 ± 10 (± S.E.) and 23 ± 8 individuals, respectively. There was high site fidelity at occupied waterbodies (> 80% recapture rates). Recruitment was recorded in only two waterbodies. Two males and four females were recorded moving 15 - 20 m between adjacent waterbodies, whereas one additional male moved 130 m. Dispersal and movement corridors important for the persistence of L. raniformis in the study area include agricultural drains and Gum Scrub Creek. High priority conservation areas are waterbodies situated in close proximity to the creek and Melbourne - Bairnsdale railway reserve, and clusters of occupied waterbodies to the south.
Aspects of the ecology and conservation of the Growling Grass Frog Litoria raniformis in an urban-fringe environment, southern Victoria
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Andrew Hamer, Aaron Organ; Aspects of the ecology and conservation of the Growling Grass Frog Litoria raniformis in an urban-fringe environment, southern Victoria. Australian Zoologist 1 October 2008; 34 (3): 393–407. doi: https://doi.org/10.7882/AZ.2008.017
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