PhD Candidate, Universidad de la República
Research: Developing a baseline for amphibian monitoring through acoustic surveys in Uruguay, South America
Abstract: Amphibians are experiencing a worldwide decline in number of species and both researchers and conservationists have been called to double their efforts in the preservation of these species. Uruguay has a diverse amphibian fauna represented mostly by the Anura (all but one of the 47 native species). However, good background information or baseline data for these species is lacking. This weakens amphibian conservation programs and initiatives in the country. Acoustic surveys, a non-invasive and low-cost technique, can be effectively employed for this purpose. Here I propose a series of year-round acoustic surveys, focused on gathering information from areas and/or species which have been consistently underrepresented in Uruguayan historical and collection records. This project aims to develop a baseline for amphibian presence and phenology. Transferring scientific knowledge to stakeholders is key to the success of management efforts and this represents a first step towards that goal in amphibian conservation.