Body Size Is Related to Temperature Preference in Hyla chrysoscelis Tadpoles

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Year of Publication:
Danielle R Kirsch, Shawna Fix, Jon M Davenport, Kristen K Cecala, Joshua R Ennen
Journal of Herpetology

Temperature plays a critical role in growth and development of anurans. Here, we investigated thermal preference of tadpoles from a wide-ranging anuran, Hyla chrysoscelis, by establishing an ex situ thermal gradient in a laboratory setting. We collected 64 tadpoles with a mean (±SD) body length of 12.2 ± 2.1 mm (range, 7–15 mm). Mean temperature preference of tadpoles ranged from 12.9 to 30.0°C, and we found a positive relationship between temperature preference and body length. Although body length is only one component of amphibian development, its apparent link with temperature preference is an exciting area for further research in this species as well as other species. Furthermore, given the broad distribution of H. chrysoscelis, there is an opportunity to investigate how thermal preferences could limit population edges and how populations may respond to shifts in environmental temperatures.


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