Field and Laboratory Techniques
in Vertebrate Biology

by James Ryan

This is a manual for those interested in studying vertebrate animals. Vertebrates include fish, amphibians, reptiles,birds, and mammals. Each chapter includes detailed exercises that allow students to practice the techniques used by today's wildlife biologists. There are 56 exercises in the manual, each with step-by-step instructions covering a wide range of techniques. Exercises include setting up and implementing basic monitoring programs, capture and handling techniques, as well as a wide range of data analysis exercises.

NEW for 2012
238 Pages
9 Chapters
56 Field or lab exercises


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Stacks Image 454
Detailed Table of Contents

Introduction .............................................................................................................1

Monitoring Fish Populations
............................................................................11
Exercise 1: Collecting Fish in Wadeable Streams
Exercise 2 Measuring, Aging, and Sexing Fish
Exercise 3: Identifying Fish Using a Dichotomous Key
Exercise 4: Voucher Specimens and Preservation Techniques
Exercise 5: Stream Channel Assessment
Exercise 6: Measuring Stream Discharge
Exercise 7: Stream Habitat Assessment
Exercise 8: Water Chemistry Characteristics
Exercise 9: Relative Abundance and Catch per Unit Effort (CPE)
Exercise 10: Length-Weight and Condition Relationships
Exercise 11: Species Diversity and Community Similarity

Monitoring Herptofauna
....................................................................................45
Exercise 1: Visual Encounter Surveys (VES)
Exercise 2: Amphibian Auditory Surveys
Exercise 3: Artificial Cover Surveys
Exercise 4: Terrestrial Drift Fences and Pitfall Traps
Exercise 5: Aquatic Surveys - Dip-netting and Kick Sampling
Exercise 6: Basking Surveys and Funnel Trapping
Exercise 7: Species Diversity Using EstimateS
Exercise 8: Using PRESENCE to Estimate Occupancy
Exercise 9: Analysis of Frog Call Data

Monitoring Bird Populations
............................................................................77
Exercise 1: Timed Point Counts
Exercise 2: Strip Transects
Exercise 3: Sampling Habitat Structure

Exercise 4: Territory Mapping and Nest Densities
Exercise 5: Mist Netting
Exercise 6: Audio Recording and Playback
Exercise 7: Avian Diversity and Habitat Trends
Exercise 8: Estimating Density from Transect Data
Exercise 9: Using the Breeding Bird Database

Monitoring Mammal Populations
..................................................................107
Exercise 1: Using Track Plates for Small Carnivores
Exercise 2: Live-Trapping Small Mammals
Exercise 3: Camera Trapping
Exercise 4: Hair Trapping Surveys
Exercise 5: Analyzing Grid Trapping Data
Exercise 6: Analyzing Camera Trap Data
Exercise 7: Using CAPTURE for Camera Trap Data
Exercise 8: Analyzing Mammalian Hairs
Exercise 9: Quantifying Hair Structure Using ImageJ Software
Exercise 10: Extracting DNA from hair samples

Mark-Recapture Studies
...................................................................................147
Exercise 1: Single Mark-Recapture (Lincoln-Petersen Method)
Exercise 2: The Schnabel Method
Exercise 3: The Jolly-Seber Model Using Excel

Mark-Recapture Using CAPTURE and JOLLY Software
.............................167
Exercise 1: Using the Program CAPTURE
Exercise 2: Tigers in India
Exercise 3: Using the Program JOLLY

GPS Tracking Using Google Earth and Movebank
......................................183
Exercise 1: Tracking Grizzly Bears with Google Earth and GPSVisualizer
Exercise 2: Exploring Movebank GPS Data

Recording and Analyzing Animal Sounds
....................................................197
Exercise 1: Field Recording
Exercise 2: Sound Analysis Using AUDACITY
Exercise 3: Playback Experiments Using Alarm Calls .

Quantifying Animal Behavior
..........................................................................213
Exercise 1: Building an Ethogram
Exercise 2: Sampling Behaviors
Exercise 3: Creating a Time Budget
Exercise 4: Creating a Transition Diagram
Exercise 5: Creating a Dominance Hierarchy
Exercise 6: Dominance Hierarchy Analysis

Resources
..............................................................................................................227
About the Author
................................................................................................234