Study

Dispersal and population state of an endangered island lizard following a conservation translocation

  • Published source details Angeli N.F., Lundgren I.F., Pollock C.G., Hillis-Starr Z.M. & Fitzgerald L.A. (2018) Dispersal and population state of an endangered island lizard following a conservation translocation. Ecological Applications, 28, 336-347.

Actions

This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Restore island ecosystems

Action Link
Reptile Conservation

Release reptiles outside of their native range

Action Link
Reptile Conservation
  1. Restore island ecosystems

    A study in 2013–2015 on a mixed forest and scrubland island in the US Virgin Islands (Angeli et al. 2018) found that St. Croix ground lizards Ameiva polops translocated to a restored island continued to increase their range annually in the fifth to seventh year after being released. Five years after St. Croix ground lizards were released, lizards occupied 41% of sites surveyed and 69% of sightings were <200 m from the release site. Six years after release, lizards occupied 60–66% of sites surveyed and seven years after release this increased to 74–87% of sites surveyed. Lizards recolonised the island from west to east (see original paper for details). Restoration of native habitat, including forest, woodland, scrubland and sandy beaches, had been underway on Buck Island (71 ha) for 40 years prior to lizards being released in 2008. A total of 57 lizards were introduced to the island in 2007 and population surveys were carried out in 63 sites (1,260 m2 circular sites, at least 80 m apart). Sites were surveyed for three days, five times/season in May 2013, May 2014, October 2015, May 2015 and October 2015. In addition, in May 2013 a total of 192 extra surveys were carried out in 32 sites, which were surveyed twice a day for three consecutive days.

    (Summarised by: Katie Sainsbury)

  2. Release reptiles outside of their native range

    A randomized study in 2013–2015 in mixed forest and scrubland on Buck Island, US Virgin Islands (Angeli et al. 2018, same experimental set-up as Fitzgerald et al. 2015) found that St. Croix ground lizards Ameiva polops released into restored island habitat outside of their native range increased their distribution in the fifth to seventh year after being released. Five years after St. Croix ground lizards were released, they occupied 41% of sites surveyed, six years after release, lizards occupied 60–66% of sites surveyed and seven years after release lizards occupied 74–87% of sites surveyed. Range expansion occurred in adjacent sites progressively further eastwards (see original paper for details). Fifty-seven lizards were introduced to Buck Island, where they had not previously been present, in 2008. Surveys were carried out in 63 sites (1,260 m2 circular sites, at least 80 m apart) across the island five times/season over three days each in May 2013, May 2014, October 2015, May 2015 and October 2015. An additional 192 surveys were carried out in 32 sites in May 2013 and these sites were surveyed twice/day for three consecutive days. Vegetation restoration had been underway for 40 years and invasive predators removed prior to lizards being released.

    (Summarised by: Katie Sainsbury)

Output references
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