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Actualidades Biológicas

Print version ISSN 0304-3584

Abstract

CORTES-AVILA, Leandro  and  TOLEDO, José J.. STUDY OF DIVERSITY OF SNAKES IN PERTURBED FOREST AND PASTURE AREAS IN SAN VICENTE DEL CAGUÁN (CAQUETÁ), COLOMBIA. Actu Biol [online]. 2013, vol.35, n.99, pp.185-197. ISSN 0304-3584.

During the last decades the forests of San Vicente del Caguán (Caquetá), Colombia, have been turned into pasture areas, an activity that is leading to biodiversity loss, isolation of populations and, in the worst of the scenarios, to local extinctions. The aim of this study was to document the effect of deforestation on snake diversity. Therefore, we selected five pasture areas and compared them to sampling areas inside five different secondary forest fragments. Sampling was conducted during day and night. Specimens were hand caught with the aid of hooks and herpetological tongs. During the four months of samplings, 57 individuals were captured, belonging to four families, 13 genera and 19 species. The family Colubridae was predominant, with 14 species represented. Helicops angulatus (Linnaeus, 1758) was the most abundant species (with 27 individuals) and occurred only in the pasture areas. The second most abundant species was Leptodeira annulata (Linnaeus, 1758) with seven individuals registered for the pasture areas and only one individual for the secondary forest fragments. Pasture areas were more species-rich (15 species) when compared to the secondary forest fragments (6). Nonmetric multidimensional scaling analysis (NMDS = EMNM) was used as an ordination method that separated two forest areas from all pasture areas, which indicates different species structure and composition between the forests and pasture areas. We conclude that the two above species mentioned above may be considered persistent and tolerances species, due to their permanence and use of resources in highly disturbed ecosystems.

Keywords : composition; snakes; structure; San Vicente del Caguán; Colombia.

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