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Addis Ababa University (2009)

REPTILE SURVEY AND SOME ECOLOGICAL STUDIES OF TWO SYMPATRIC LIZARD SPECIES, Tarentola annularis AND Mabuya striata FROM AWASH NATIONAL PARK, ETHIOPIA

Ashebir, Mekonnen

Titre : REPTILE SURVEY AND SOME ECOLOGICAL STUDIES OF TWO SYMPATRIC LIZARD SPECIES, Tarentola annularis AND Mabuya striata FROM AWASH NATIONAL PARK, ETHIOPIA

Auteur : Ashebir, Mekonnen

Université de soutenance : Addis Ababa University

Grade : Master of Science in Environmental Science 2009

Résumé
The main objective of this study was to obtain base line information about the reptilian fauna of the Awash National Park. The survey was conducted using active search, pit fall trapping, cover sheet, and photographing methods from August, 2008 to June, 2009, covering both the dry and wet seasons. Resource partitioning study was also carried out on two sympatric lizard species, Tarentola annularis and Mabuya striata by filling the herpetological data sheet whenever one of the two species was encountered. Temperature and relative humidity of the area were also recorded every hour. During the survey, a total of 32 species belonging to three orders (Order Squamata, Order Testudines and order Crocodylia) were recorded. The Order Squamata was the most diverse containing 29 species belonging to two Suborders, Suborder Sauria and Suborder Serpents. Suborder Sauria comprised 22 species belonging to12 genera and seven families, while Suborder Serpents included seven species belonging to six genera and three families. The Order Testudines comprised two species belonging to two genera and two families. Order Crocodylia also consists of only one species belonging to a genus and a family. Out of the 32 species recorded, 12 (37.5%) species were newly recorded. The diversity of reptiles varied among the different habitat types. The rocky area habitat appeared to be a choice for most of the reptiles encountered in the study period (34.21%), followed by the bushland habitat (19.74%). The most preferred habitats of snakes encountered were rocky areas (42.31%), followed by sandy areas (26.92%), while the most commonly used habitats of lizards were buildings and tents (54.92%), followed by the rocky areas (24.59%) and bushlands (14.75%). Regarding resource partitioning, the two sympatric lizard species were found to have a very high overlap in their spatial niche dimension and moderate overlap in food niche dimension, which can be compensated by the x lowest overlap in their temporal niche dimension. This ecological survey revealed that the Park supports relatively a variety of reptile species in different habitat types, though it needs more detailed surveys on both the taxonomic and geographic coverage of the reptilian fauna of the area.

Mots clés : sympatry resource partitioning reptiles niche overlap niche breadth habitat association diversity Awash National Park

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