Award Date

5-2005

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Environmental Science

Advisor 1

Dr. Chad L. Cross-Content Advisor

Advisor 2

Dr. Shawn L. Gerstenberger-Content Advisor

Advisor 3

Dr. Helen R. Neill

Number of Pages

23

Abstract

Planned removal and eradication of saltcedar in the Las Vegas Wash, Nevada could potentially generate adverse impacts on present desert woodrat (Neotoma lepida) populations inhabiting the area. Consequently, research was conducted investigating population sizes of N. lepida in two distinct microhabitat types, saltcedar (Tamarix sp.) and mesquite/quailbush (Prosopis sp./Atriplex lentiformis). The results of this study will aid in gauging the effects of the changes in vegetation once restoration work is completed and assist with logistical scheduling for implementation of control measures. Mark-recapture field techniques were utilized for data collection from July 2002 to June 2003. Population estimates were calculated using program CAPTURE. Preference for specific microhabitat type and dependence of population size on temperature were analyzed using G-tests and chi-square tests, respectively. It was determined that N. lepida preferred the saltcedar microhabitats to the mesquite/quailbush microhabitats and that population sizes increased with increased ambient air temperatures.

Keywords

Las Vegas Wash (Nev.); Nevada; Desert woodrat (Neotoma lepida); Niche (Ecology); Rodent populations; Habitat selection; Habitat surveys; Riparian ecology

Disciplines

Desert Ecology | Ecology and Evolutionary Biology | Environmental Sciences | Population Biology | Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecology

Language

English


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