Habitat use of endemic Balkan rock lizards (Dinarolacerta spp.)
© 2017 Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkunde e.V. (DGHT), Mannheim, Germany
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Dinarolacerta mosorensis and D. montenegrina are allopatric and closely related rock lizards endemic to the Dinaric Mountains of the Balkan Peninsula. We analysed their habitat characteristics and relative abundances in the mountains of Montenegro. We found significant differences in structural features of the microhabitat used both between populations of D. mosorensis and the two species. Dinarolacerta mosorensis was associated with relatively more shaded and damper spots on rocks closer to vegetation and leaf litter, while D. montenegrina was found in more open, rocky situations. There were significant differences in relative abundance between the sampling sites. Generally, the studied lizards were more abundant at sites with greater percentage of leaf litter and lower percentages of bare ground and small rocks, despite the lower frequency of available refuges in these places. Our results provide basic information that could assist in the adoption of adequate management practices for protection or restoration of habitat attributes relevant to these vulnerable (D. mosorensis) and endemic species.
Keywords:Squamata; Lacertidae; habitat preferences; abundance; conservation; Montenegro
- Diversity of the amphibians and reptiles on the Balkan Peninsula: evolutionary and conservation aspects (RS-173043)
- Serbian Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development (grant no. OI1613047)
In: Salamandra (2017), 53(2): 279-284