Relating amphibian population survey data to UV gradients in three PRIMENet parks: Glacier, Sequoia/Kings Canyon, and Olympic National Parks


Principal Investigator:

  Peter Trenham
U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service
2800 Cottage Way
Sacramento, CA 95825
Phone: (916) 414-6600
Dan Fagre, USGS-Glacier NP
Harold Werner, Sequoia/Kings Canyon NP
Patte Happe, Olympic NP
Mike Adams, USGS-Olympic NP
Steve Corn, USGS-Glacier NP
Dave Bradford, EPA-Las Vegas
Roland Knapp, UCSB

Parks: Glacier National Park, Olympic National Park, Sequoia/Kings Canyon National Park


Project Summary:

Amphibian population declines are occurring in some protected areas, such as the parks of the Sierra Nevada, California. Causes of these declines are not known, but one of the hypotheses implicates UV radiation as a stressor. Currently we are monitoring UV radiation at fourteen PRIMENet parks in an effort to detect trends in this stress through time. We want to make use of this baseline data to extrapolate UV exposure in amphibian habitat along an elevation gradient in three western parks. This will be done in concert with amphibian population surveys over a two-year period. The methods developed during this project can then be used in other parks and protected areas in an effort to link dose/response to explain amphibian population declines, especially if the Department of the Interior amphibian initiative is funded in FY 2000.

This is an interagency research project with investigators from the EPA, NPS, USGS-BRD, and universities. This project is designed to perform amphibian metapopulation analysis on selected pond-breeding amphibian species in three parks along an elevational gradient. Selected pond clusters (patches) will be surveyed in summer 1999-2000 for presence/absence of the target species. At these sites UV will be characterized by measuring UV extinction, concentrations of dissolved organic carbon (DOC), and by habitat mapping.


Paul Steven Corn and Erin Muths. "Variable breeding phenology affects the exposure of amphibian embryos to ultraviolet radiation." in Ecology, 83(11), 2002, pp. 2958–2963.

Michael J. Adams, Daniel E. Schindler, and R. Bruce Bury. "Association of amphibians with attenuation of ultraviolet-b radiation in montane ponds." in Oecologia 128, 2001, pp. 519–525.

Ultraviolet Radiation/Amphibian Populations Workshop Report

References for this project.

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