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1 March 2012 Diet, Fecundity, and Use of Bromeliads by Phyllodytes luteolus (Anura: Hylidae) in Southeastern Brazil
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Abstract
This study explores the feeding ecology, habitat use, and fecundity of Phyllodytes luteolus inside bromeliads in the restinga of Regência (sandy coastal plain), Espírito Santo state, southeastern Brazil. Because bromeliads are harvested for commercial use, and frogs may be collected accidently, the ecology of this frog is of particular interest. We collected 363 individuals of P. luteolus (103 tadpoles, 74 juveniles, 64 males, and 122 females) from three species of bromeliads in a 4-km2 area bimonthly from February to December of 1998. Ants and termites were the dominant food items in terms of number and mass over time. The percentage of prey items and the size of prey eaten by juveniles differed significantly from those of adults. Dominant prey items were relatively similar across the sampled bromeliad species and locations. Phyllodytes luteolus preferred Vriesea procera, the most-complex bromeliad in our study site. Half of the individuals were found in bromeliads located in transitional zones. Female P. luteolus were slightly larger than the males, which may have determined the strong sex ratio bias toward females. We found females with developed oocytes (range 11–15) in every sampled month, indicating a protracted spawning period. This frog can be considered an active forager and specialist, feeding preferentially on colonial insects. Phyllodytes luteolus uses several species of harvested bromeliads and possesses several attributes that could facilitate its success as an invasive species.
Rodrigo B. Ferreira, José A. P. Schineider and Rogério L. Teixeira "Diet, Fecundity, and Use of Bromeliads by Phyllodytes luteolus (Anura: Hylidae) in Southeastern Brazil," Journal of Herpetology 46(1), (1 March 2012). https://doi.org/10.1670/09-040
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