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Amphibian Research and Monitoring Initiative

ARMI » Topics » Management


Vernal pool
Larissa Bailey (Colorado State), USGS, FWS, and SCC volunteers building vernal pools at Patuxent NWR, to adaptively manage for climate change. Photo by: A. Green.

Only a few years ago, amphibians were rarely considered in the development and implementation of management plans. But now, itís not uncommon to see amphibian populations as the primary targets of management activities.

ARMI scientists conduct research on the impacts of various traditional management actions on amphibians, and have worked with partners to develop and test novel management options specifically to benefit amphibians.

Important decisions are made every day on management and policy that affect multiple wildlife species. ARMI works with its partners in Federal and State agencies to develop processes for structuring their natural resource decisions to achieve their conservation objectives related to amphibians.

ARMI Products on Management

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This is an ARMI Product. Even with forewarning, challenges remain in developing a proactive response to emerging infectious diseases
Authors: Grant EHC, Muths E, Katz RA, Canessa S, Adams MJ, Ballard JR, Berger L, Briggs CJ, Coleman JH, Gray MJ, Harris MC, Harris RN, Hossack B, Huyvaert KP, Kolby J, Lips KR, Lovich RE, McCallum HI, Mendelson III JR, Nanjappa P, Olson DH, Powers JG, Richgels KLD, Russell RE, Schmidt BR | Outlet: Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution
Despite calls for improving responses to emerging infectious diseases of wildlife, management is seldom considered until a disease has been detected in affected populations. Reactive approaches may limit the potential for control and increase total response costs. An alternative, proactive, management framework can identify immediate actions that reduce future impacts even before a disease is detected, as well as prepare actions conditional on disease emergence. We identify four main challenges to developing proactive management strategies for the newly discovered salamander pathogen, Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans (Bsal). Given that deep uncertainty is a hallmark of wildlife disease management and decisions are often complicated by multiple competing objectives, we advocate using decision analysis to create and evaluate trade-offs among proactive (pre-emergence) and reactive (post-emergence) management. Using principles from decision analysis, natural resources agencies and policy-makers can utilize a variety of tools to improve the development of management strategies for emerging infectious diseases.

This is an ARMI Product. Amphibian dynamics in constructed ponds on a wildlife refuge: developing expected responses to hydrological restoration
Author: Hossack BR | Date: 2016 | Outlet: Hydrobiologia
Management actions are based upon predictable responses. To form expected responses to restoration actions, I estimated habitat relationships and trends (2002‒2015) for four pond-breeding amphibians on a wildlife refuge (Montana, USA) where changes to restore historical hydrology to the system greatly expanded (≥8 times) the flooded area of the primary breeding site for western toads (Anaxyrus boreas). Additional restoration actions are planned for the near future, including removing ponds that provide amphibian habitat. Multi-season occupancy models based on data from 15 ponds sampled during 7 years revealed that the number of breeding subpopulations increased modestly for Columbia spotted frogs (Rana luteiventris) and was stationary for long-toed salamanders (Ambystoma macrodactylum) and Pacific treefrogs (Pseudacris regilla). For these three species, pond depth was the characteristic that was associated most frequently with occupancy or changes in colonization and extinction. In contrast, a large decrease in colonization by western toads explained the decline from eight occupied ponds in 2002 to two ponds in 2015. This decline occurred despite an increase in wetland area and the colonization of a newly-created pond. These changes highlight the challenges of managing for multiple species and how management responses can be unpredictable, possibly reducing the efficacy of targeted actions.

This is an ARMI Product. Notes on the Distribution of Tiger Salamanders (presumed <i>Ambystoma mavortium stebbinsi</i>) in Sonora, Mexico
Authors: Hossack, BR, Muths, E, Rorabaugh, JC, Lemos Espinal, JA, Sigafus, BH, Chambert, T, Carreon Arroyo, G, Hurtado Felix, D, Toyos Martinez, D, Jones, TR | Date: 2016-06 | Outlet: Herpetological Review

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