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A skeletochronological estimation of age and body size by the Sichuan torrent frog (Amolops mantzorum) between two populations at different altitudes

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The age and body size of Amolops mantzorum between two populations distributed in western China were estimated using skeletochronology. The age at sexual mature of individuals was be estimated 2 yrs old in males for both populations while females reached sexual maturity at 2 yrs old at the low-altitude site and 3 yrs old at the high-altitude site. The oldest males and females from the high-altitude site were 7 yrs and 10 yrs old while longevity of males reached 6 yrs and 7 yrs in females at the low-altitude site. Average age between males and females differed significantly at the high-altitude site, but it did no differ significantly at the low-altitude site. For both sexes, average age did not differ significantly between the populations. On average, adult females had significantly larger body sizes than adult males for both populations. Sexual size dimorphism from the low-altitude site and the high-altitude site was 0.280 and 0.282, respectively. Body size between the populations differed significantly within each sex. Positive correlations were found between age and body size for both sexes within each site. The growth coefficient did not differ significantly within a population both sexes or in a sex between the populations. Our findings suggest that inter-population difference in body size of the frogs seems to be related to longevity of individuals, ambient temperature and construction of dams for electricity.

Affiliations: 1: Institute of Rare Animals and Plants, China West Normal University, Nanchong 637009, China; 2: Department of Zoology, College of Life Science, Wuhan University, Wuhan 430072, China


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