Comparison of three widely used marking techniques for adult anuran species Litoria verreauxii alpina

Brannelly, Laura A., Berger, Lee, and Skerratt, Lee F. (2014) Comparison of three widely used marking techniques for adult anuran species Litoria verreauxii alpina. Herpetological Conservation and Biology, 9 (2). pp. 428-435.

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Effective marking techniques are required for both laboratory and field studies of adult amphibians, especially when individuals cannot be identified based on color or pattern. We compared the efficacy of four marking techniques: toe clipping, visual implant elastomer (VIE) tags, and passive integrative transponder (PIT) tags injected into two locations (the body cavity and subcutaneously) in the endangered Alpine Tree Frog, Litoria verreauxii alpina. The most effective marking method was toe clipping, with 96.1% correct identifications. The second best marking method was PIT tags injected subcutaneously, where tags were retained in 73.3% of animals after six weeks, but tag retention might decrease over time due to tag expulsion. PIT tags injected into the body cavity were poorly retained (33.3%). The least successful marking method was VIE tags, as individuals were correctly identified only 18.4% of the time. We conclude that toe clipping may remain the most effective marking method for some amphibian species, where modern tagging techniques are unreliable due to low tag retention and high tag movement. Researchers should conduct marking trials before implementing large scale marking schemes in unstudied species, and they should publish negative results as well as desired outcomes.

Item ID: 38348
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1931-7603
Keywords: marking methods; passive integrative transponder tags; toe clip; visual implant elastomer tags
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Date Deposited: 23 Apr 2015 01:36
FoR Codes: 06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0608 Zoology > 060899 Zoology not elsewhere classified @ 100%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9608 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity > 960899 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity of Environments not elsewhere classified @ 100%
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