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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Fishes, Amphibians, and Reptiles of Habitats Created by Erosion Control Structures

Authors
item Smiley, Peter
item Kallies, Kenneth
item Knight, Scott
item Cooper, Charles

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: June 1, 1997
Publication Date: N/A

Technical Abstract: Drop pipes, or field-scale grade control structures, are extensively utilized to control gully erosion in North Mississippi. Four habitat types may result from drop pipe installation and are classified as follows: upland meadows, saturated emergent wetlands, scrub-shrub wetlands, and intermittent riverine wetlands. A survey of 180 structures revealed that the upland meadows are the most frequently occurring habitat type (62%), followed in abundance by scrub-scrub wetlands (21%), saturated emergent wetlands (11%), and intermittent riverine wetlands (7%). We sampled fish, amphibians, and reptiles from four selected sites of each habitat type using multiple collecting techniques. Fish were captured only within intermittent riverine wetlands, while amphibians and reptiles were captured from all habitat types. Mean amphibian species richness was not significantly different between upland meadow/saturated emergent wetlands and scrub-shrub/ intermittent riverine wetlands pairs. Both scrub-shrub and intermittent riverine wetlands had significantly higher amphibian species richness than both upland meadows and saturated emergent wetlands. The highest reptile mean species richness occurred in intermittent riverine wetlands and was significantly different from all other habitat types. Altering standard installation practices to increase the number of scrub-shrub and intermittent riverine wetlands will provide the greatest benefits for local fish, amphibians, and reptiles communities.

Last Modified: 8/22/2014
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