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Field reproductive potential of tropical high mountain Hyla labialis females: direct and indirect evidence from mark-recapture data

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Data from 203 recaptured Hyla labialis females, representing 37.9% of all females captured, individually marked and released during a five-year field study in a tropical highland valley in the eastern chain of the Colombian Andes were used to examine directly (recording a sequence of spawning events) and indirectly (finding a large change in body condition index between successive encounters) the reproductive activity of individual females in relation to the reproductive pattern of the entire population, which had two long breeding seasons per year. Equivalent results were obtained from both sources of evidence for estimating the length of individual breeding intervals. No female was encountered breeding twice in the same season. Only a small percentage of the adult females was found at the breeding ponds in successive seasons. The majority of the females apparently spawned once per year or at even longer intervals. The length of individual breeding intervals was unrelated to body size, body mass and body condition index of the females. The variable lengths of breeding intervals of individual females seem to be a combined consequence of physiological recovery capacity after an oviposition and several environmental factors.

Affiliations: 1: Universidad de los Andes, Departamento de Ciencias Biológicas, A. A. 4976, Santafé de Bogotá, Colombia


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