Movement patterns and habitat selection of the giant day gecko (Phelsuma madagascariensis grandis) in the Masoala rainforest exhibit, Zurich Zoo

Thomas Wanger, Iris Motzke, Samuel Furrer, Bernd Gruber

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    1 Citation (Scopus)

    Abstract

    In 2003, Zurich Zoo opened the Masoala exhibit to help preserving the endemic flora and fauna of Madagascar and to raise public awareness of the threats to this biodiversity hotspot. The enclosure houses more than 45 animal taxa and over 35000 individual plants on almost 11000 m2. After three years of establishment of food webs and demographic changes in the community, there is an urgent demand for animal population monitoring. Therefore, this paper aims (i) to determine how increasing gecko density affects gecko movement patterns in the exhibit and (ii) to assess habitat selection in 12 heterogeneous areas within the exhibit, differing in various environmental parameters (e.g., plant species, sun hours, and food sources). In contrast to an earlier study on this gecko population, our results on gecko movement patterns show that moved distances are evenly distributed amongst distances between 0 to 70 m. Moreover, geckos showed strong habitat preferences for certain areas; plants like Ravenala madagascariensis and Pandanus spp. as well as ventilation tubes and cages were most frequently used as perch sites. When discussed in the framework of the ideal free distribution theory, our results suggest that gecko movement patterns are strongly affected by increasing gecko density.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)147-153
    Number of pages7
    JournalSalamandra
    Volume45
    Publication statusPublished - 2009

    Fingerprint

    zoo
    Gekkonidae
    habitat preferences
    zoos
    habitat selection
    rainforest
    rain forests
    ideal free distribution
    ventilation
    food web
    flora
    biodiversity
    fauna
    Pandanus
    perches (animal housing)
    food
    animal
    monitoring
    Phelsuma
    Madagascar

    Cite this

    @article{bec7bb2494e44acd80bc1b4d30d1f3b2,
    title = "Movement patterns and habitat selection of the giant day gecko (Phelsuma madagascariensis grandis) in the Masoala rainforest exhibit, Zurich Zoo",
    abstract = "In 2003, Zurich Zoo opened the Masoala exhibit to help preserving the endemic flora and fauna of Madagascar and to raise public awareness of the threats to this biodiversity hotspot. The enclosure houses more than 45 animal taxa and over 35000 individual plants on almost 11000 m2. After three years of establishment of food webs and demographic changes in the community, there is an urgent demand for animal population monitoring. Therefore, this paper aims (i) to determine how increasing gecko density affects gecko movement patterns in the exhibit and (ii) to assess habitat selection in 12 heterogeneous areas within the exhibit, differing in various environmental parameters (e.g., plant species, sun hours, and food sources). In contrast to an earlier study on this gecko population, our results on gecko movement patterns show that moved distances are evenly distributed amongst distances between 0 to 70 m. Moreover, geckos showed strong habitat preferences for certain areas; plants like Ravenala madagascariensis and Pandanus spp. as well as ventilation tubes and cages were most frequently used as perch sites. When discussed in the framework of the ideal free distribution theory, our results suggest that gecko movement patterns are strongly affected by increasing gecko density.",
    keywords = "artificial ecosystem, gecko, movement pattern, habitat selection, ideal free distribution theory.",
    author = "Thomas Wanger and Iris Motzke and Samuel Furrer and Bernd Gruber",
    year = "2009",
    language = "English",
    volume = "45",
    pages = "147--153",
    journal = "Salamandra",
    issn = "0036-3375",
    publisher = "Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Herpetologie und Terrarienkunde",

    }

    Movement patterns and habitat selection of the giant day gecko (Phelsuma madagascariensis grandis) in the Masoala rainforest exhibit, Zurich Zoo. / Wanger, Thomas; Motzke, Iris; Furrer, Samuel; Gruber, Bernd.

    In: Salamandra, Vol. 45, 2009, p. 147-153.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    TY - JOUR

    T1 - Movement patterns and habitat selection of the giant day gecko (Phelsuma madagascariensis grandis) in the Masoala rainforest exhibit, Zurich Zoo

    AU - Wanger, Thomas

    AU - Motzke, Iris

    AU - Furrer, Samuel

    AU - Gruber, Bernd

    PY - 2009

    Y1 - 2009

    N2 - In 2003, Zurich Zoo opened the Masoala exhibit to help preserving the endemic flora and fauna of Madagascar and to raise public awareness of the threats to this biodiversity hotspot. The enclosure houses more than 45 animal taxa and over 35000 individual plants on almost 11000 m2. After three years of establishment of food webs and demographic changes in the community, there is an urgent demand for animal population monitoring. Therefore, this paper aims (i) to determine how increasing gecko density affects gecko movement patterns in the exhibit and (ii) to assess habitat selection in 12 heterogeneous areas within the exhibit, differing in various environmental parameters (e.g., plant species, sun hours, and food sources). In contrast to an earlier study on this gecko population, our results on gecko movement patterns show that moved distances are evenly distributed amongst distances between 0 to 70 m. Moreover, geckos showed strong habitat preferences for certain areas; plants like Ravenala madagascariensis and Pandanus spp. as well as ventilation tubes and cages were most frequently used as perch sites. When discussed in the framework of the ideal free distribution theory, our results suggest that gecko movement patterns are strongly affected by increasing gecko density.

    AB - In 2003, Zurich Zoo opened the Masoala exhibit to help preserving the endemic flora and fauna of Madagascar and to raise public awareness of the threats to this biodiversity hotspot. The enclosure houses more than 45 animal taxa and over 35000 individual plants on almost 11000 m2. After three years of establishment of food webs and demographic changes in the community, there is an urgent demand for animal population monitoring. Therefore, this paper aims (i) to determine how increasing gecko density affects gecko movement patterns in the exhibit and (ii) to assess habitat selection in 12 heterogeneous areas within the exhibit, differing in various environmental parameters (e.g., plant species, sun hours, and food sources). In contrast to an earlier study on this gecko population, our results on gecko movement patterns show that moved distances are evenly distributed amongst distances between 0 to 70 m. Moreover, geckos showed strong habitat preferences for certain areas; plants like Ravenala madagascariensis and Pandanus spp. as well as ventilation tubes and cages were most frequently used as perch sites. When discussed in the framework of the ideal free distribution theory, our results suggest that gecko movement patterns are strongly affected by increasing gecko density.

    KW - artificial ecosystem

    KW - gecko

    KW - movement pattern

    KW - habitat selection

    KW - ideal free distribution theory.

    M3 - Article

    VL - 45

    SP - 147

    EP - 153

    JO - Salamandra

    JF - Salamandra

    SN - 0036-3375

    ER -