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Data from: Intra-specific variability of hindlimb length in the palmate newt: an indicator of population isolation induced by habitat fragmentation?

Citation

Trochet, Audrey et al. (2016), Data from: Intra-specific variability of hindlimb length in the palmate newt: an indicator of population isolation induced by habitat fragmentation?, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.5b270

Abstract

Habitat fragmentation is one of the main drivers of global amphibian decline. Anthropogenic landscape elements can act as barriers, hindering the dispersal that is essential for maintaining gene flow between populations. Dispersal ability can be influenced by locomotor performance, which in turn can depend on morphological traits, such as hindlimb length (HLL) in amphibians. Here, we tested relationships between HLL and environmental variables—road types, forests and agricultural lands—among 35 sub-populations of palmate newts (Lissotriton helveticus) in southwestern France. We expected roads to select for short-legged newts due to a higher mortality of more mobile individuals (long-legged newts) when crossing roads. Accordingly, short-legged newts were found in the vicinity of roads, whereas long-legged newts were found closer to forests and in ponds close geographically to another water body. HLL in newts was hence influenced by habitat types in a heterogeneous landscape, and could therefore be used as an indicator of population isolation in a meta-population system.

Usage Notes

Location

Southern France