Photographic identification is an emerging method for recognising wild animals. This harmless methodology allows researchers to identify “naturally marked” individuals and therefore study their specific ecology and behaviour. However, before incurring potential data loss, it is recommended to test the methodology on the target species and evaluate the pros and cons. We assessed the reliability of photographic identification in adult Hydromantes salamanders from three species. Specifically, we assessed whether the dorsal pattern of adult salamanders changed over time, thus evaluating its potential use as a reliable marking methodology. We used capture-mark-recapture and controlled conditions (i.e. individuals kept in fauna boxes) to evaluate potential changes in the dorsal pattern of Hydromantes through time. We did not observe any change in the dorsal pattern in the three species during the study period. Photographic identification might be a useful marking technique for these endangered species. However, these animals are usually found in environments generally lacking light and thus, researchers must be careful in setting up proper light conditions to produce suitable pictures for individual identification of Hydromantes.

On the stability of the dorsal pattern of European cave Salamanders (genus Hydromantes)

Lunghi E.
;
2019

Abstract

Photographic identification is an emerging method for recognising wild animals. This harmless methodology allows researchers to identify “naturally marked” individuals and therefore study their specific ecology and behaviour. However, before incurring potential data loss, it is recommended to test the methodology on the target species and evaluate the pros and cons. We assessed the reliability of photographic identification in adult Hydromantes salamanders from three species. Specifically, we assessed whether the dorsal pattern of adult salamanders changed over time, thus evaluating its potential use as a reliable marking methodology. We used capture-mark-recapture and controlled conditions (i.e. individuals kept in fauna boxes) to evaluate potential changes in the dorsal pattern of Hydromantes through time. We did not observe any change in the dorsal pattern in the three species during the study period. Photographic identification might be a useful marking technique for these endangered species. However, these animals are usually found in environments generally lacking light and thus, researchers must be careful in setting up proper light conditions to produce suitable pictures for individual identification of Hydromantes.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11697/193224
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