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dc.contributor.authorWholey, James
dc.contributor.authorPalladino, Alex
dc.contributor.authorGarneau, Danielle
dc.description.abstract"There are many different species of herpetofauna in upstate New York, in part due to our abundance of wetlands. Forested areas with soil rich in organic matter, dense leaf litter, moist soils, and abundant coarse woody debris are particularly suitable. We aimed to compare herpetofaunal communities at two upstate New York sites 1) an experimental forest that underwent a suite of silvicultural practices at the Paul Smiths Visitor’s Interpretive Center (VIC), Franklin County and 2) a managed woodlot (Godwin Woods) in Morrisonville, Clinton County. In fall 2023, we implemented a cover object search of rocks, logs, and coverboards, along riparian habitat at Godwin Woods (Riley Brook) and experimentally manipulated forest patches (FERDA plots) at Jenkins Mountain on the Logger’s Loop trail (Paul Smiths). For each individual, we used ArcGIS Survey123 to georeference, catalog an image, microhabitat, soil type, and metrics such as weight and snout-to-vent length. Soil was sampled from herpetofaunal sites, as well as random points to compare percent moisture and organic carbon, as well as pH differences. Herpetofaunal communities were unique and species richness was low at both sites VIC (S=3) and Godwin Woods (S=2). VIC herpetofauna was dominated by red-backed salamanders (Plethodon cinereus), as well as American toad (Anaxyrus americanus) and spring peepers (Pseudacris crucifer). Godwin Woods herpetofauna were less abundant and consisted of northern dusky (Desmognathus fuscus) and northern two-lined salamanders (Eurycea bislineata). Herpetofauna were most abundant at sites least disturbed (e.g., individual tree cut and control). In addition, the percent soil moisture at herpetofaunal locations at both the VIC and Godwin Woods was greater than those of random control samples. Soil organic carbon at herpetofaunal sites was higher and lower than random sites at the VIC and Godwin Woods, respectively. All soil variables were significantly different across sites and likely influenced herpetofaunal community composition and abundance. Our findings serve as an important reminder to landowners and foresters of the need to consider the consequences of overstory management practices on sensitive understory wildlife species."en_US
dc.rightsAttribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International*
dc.subjectred-backed salamandersen_US
dc.subjectsoil conditionsen_US
dc.titleThe influence of different silvicultural practices and soil characteristics on herpetofaunal communities in northern New Yorken_US
dc.typeCapstone Projecten_US
dc.description.institutionSUNY Plattsburghen_US
dc.description.departmentCenter for Earth and Environmental Scienceen_US
dc.description.degreelevelN/Aen_US 2023en_US

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Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International
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