Despite growing concern over habitat destruction, little is known regarding the activities of pond-breeding amphibians in the terrestrial environment. Yet, because most pond-breeding amphibian species spend the majority of their time in terrestrial habitats, it is important to understand what role terrestrial habitat plays in their life history. We examined the stomach contents of the Gray Treefrog (Hyla versicolor) in central Missouri using a stomach-flushing technique. Treefrogs were stomach-flushed; stomach contents were dried and weighed; and prey items were counted and identified for frogs caught in both artificial arboreal refugia and at breeding ponds. The majority of prey consisted of ants (41.2%) and beetles (29.6%). Both males and females caught in artificial refugia contained greater stomach content mass than those caught at breeding ponds. There was a positive correlation between mass of stomach contents and distance from breeding ponds, with the average number of beetles per stomach increasing with distance from ponds. There was also greater stomach content mass in frogs found in artificial refugia on white oaks than red oaks or sugar maples, but there was no relationship between tree diameter and stomach content mass. These results demonstrate the importance of protecting terrestrial habitat to maintain foraging areas for treefrogs.
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