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German Journal of Herpetology

Augusto-Alves, G., J. Ruggeri, A. G. S. Martins, A. H. R. Domingos, I. Santos & L. F. Toledo

In Issues 2020

Leptodactylus flavopictus: temporal calling activity and tadpole redescription. pp. 123-134 plus Supplementary documents.

Abstract. Anuran calling activity is linked to adequate environmental conditions, especially relative humidity, temperature, and rainfall. Consequently, the breeding season is frequently concomitant to the rainy season for most anuran species. This applies in particular to species that reproduce in temporary water bodies, such as our focal species Leptodactylus flavopictus. We assessed the daily and annual calling activity of L. flavopictus through passive acoustic monitoring during a one-year period at Reserva Betary, southeastern Brazil. We redescribe its advertisement call and tadpole, adding details previously unavailable. Adults of L. flavopictus presented seasonal activity, with calls being detected mostly between August and December. The most intense calling activity (in terms of greater calling rates) was detected during spring between October and November. Calling activity was predominantly nocturnal, with an increase of call rates soon after sunset, peaking about 6 hours after sunset. The advertisement call of L. flavopictus is a short, non-pulsed single, note, low pitched (280–680 Hz), and contains harmonics. The tadpole presented morphological traits similar to those of other leptodactylids from temporary ponds, such as L. vastus, for example. The presence of keratinized mouthparts, the shape of labial tooth, and a simple internal oral morphology suggest that this species is at least facultatively carnivorous. During this study, we collected more than 200 hours of soundscape recordings, which included vocalizations of other animals (as birds, other frogs, and insects) that may be used for future community ecology research. We, therefore, reinforce the use of passive acoustic monitoring for studies on anuran behaviour, and the inclusion of advertisement calls and tadpole descriptions in taxonomic and systematic studies, as these features have shown to be important in elucidating questions on anuran evolution.

Key words. Amphibia, Anura, Leptodactylidae, Atlantic rainforest, bioacoustics, internal oral morphology, amphibian larvae, passive acoustic monitoring.

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