2014 | VOLUME 30 | ISSUES 1-4

Research Article

Notes on the diets of five amphibian species from southwestern Taiwan

Gerrut Norval, Shao-Chang Huang, Jean-Jay Mao, Stephen R. Goldberg, Yi-Ju Yang

green envelope gnorval@gmail.com

Pages: 69-77

The stomach contents of 156 anuran specimens, of five species, from the families, Bufonidae, Dicroglossidae and Microhylidae, that had been accidentally collected by pitfall traps, were examined to contribute to the understanding of the diets of these anuran species. Three thousand four-hundred and six prey items, from 21 orders of 6 classes were recorded, and ants (Formicidae) were the most numerous prey items in the diets of all five anuran species. Fejervarya limnocharis had the broadest dietary niche breadth, followed by Duttaphrynus melanostictus, Microhyla fissipes, Micryletta stejnegeri, and Microhyla heymonsi, in that order. There were also substantial dietary overlaps among the anurans described herein, and the degree of overlap ranged from ca. 80% to ca. 95%. The results of this study provides further support for the suggestion that Duttaphrynus melanostictus and Fejervarya limnocharis are dietary generalists that op­portunistically prey on whatever prey of suitable size is present in any given habitat. As for the microhylids, the results of this study support the conclusion that members of the genus Microhyla are ant-specialists. The results of this study also suggests that all five species are predators of primarily terrestrial arthropods. Future dietary niche partitioning and competition studies should attempt to identify the major prey categories to the species, or at least genus levels, because there may be variations in the species, even of the same order, in the diets of anurans.

coverPublished: 31 January 2014