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Individual study: Effects of food type on developmental characteristics of an ephemeral pond-breeding anuran, Pseudacris triseriata feriarum

Published source details

Britson C.A. & Kissel R.E. (1996) Effects of food type on developmental characteristics of an ephemeral pond-breeding anuran, Pseudacris triseriata feriarum. Herpetologica, 52, 374-382


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Amphibians: Formulate larval diets to improve development or survival to adulthood Management of Captive Animals

A randomized, replicated, controlled study in 1996 in Tennessee, USA found that tadpoles of upland chorus frogs Pseudacris triseriata feriarum had a higher body mass and reached a more advanced developmental stage when fed a control diet (rabbit chow and fish food) or freshwater algae, compared to those fed pine or oak pollen. Tadpoles fed only pine or oak pollen showed similar survival to the end of the experiment to those fed control or algae diets (at least 48 of 50 tadpoles survived per diet). However, tadpoles on the pine and oak pollen diets were unable to undergo metamorphosis. Average body mass was significantly higher at Day 18 and 27 for control diet and freshwater algae compared to pine or oak pollen (data reported as statistical model results). The development stage (Gosner scale) reached at Day 36 also differed: control diet (stage 40), freshwater algae (stage 38), oak pollen (stage 28) and pine pollen (stage 27). The control diet consisted of Purina rabbit chow pellets and flaked fish food (ratio 3:1). Pine and oak pollen are found naturally in the temporary ponds in which upland chorus frogs breed. Ten tadpoles were randomly assigned to each of twenty containers for five replicates of each diet. An additional 12 feeding treatments were carried out to test the effect of presenting the different diets sequentially over four nine-day periods.