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A comparison of techniques for sampling amphibians in isolated wetlands in Georgia, USA

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We compared the effectiveness of five amphibian sampling methods in nine isolated wetlands in Baker County, Georgia, USA. Overall, aquatic funnel traps yielded the most species, although the number detected using frogloggers (automated frog call recording devices), funnel traps, dipnetting, and PVC pipe refugia was not significantly different among sampling techniques. We detected the same median number of species with funnel traps and frogloggers as with all five methods combined. Methods varied widely in their detection probabilities for individual species and life stages. Species occupancy estimates were strongly affected by method choice. Our results suggest that a combination of methods and prolonged sampling periods are necessary to detect the large number of species present in southeastern isolated wetlands. We recommend that future amphibian surveys in these habitats use a combination of floating funnel traps, frogloggers, and crayfish traps as sampling methods when an assessment of species richness is the objective of a study.

Affiliations: 1: Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, 3377 East U.S. Hwy 90, Lake City, FL 32072, USA; 2: Joseph W. Jones Ecological Research Center, Route 2, Box 2324, Newton, GA 39870, USA; 3: Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602-2151, USA; 4: Savannah River Ecology Laboratory, P.O. Drawer E, Aiken, SC 29802-1030, USA


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