Invasive Predators and Amphibian Decline | Pepperdine University | Seaver College

Invasive Predators and Amphibian Decline

First-Year Student as Scholars Seminar

Dr. Lee Kats, Frank R. Seaver Chair in Natural Science and Professor of Biology, Pepperdine University

Invasive predators and amphibian decline: Pepperdine student in the field

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Our research focuses on the role of invasive predators in amphibian decline, specifically in freshwater streams of the Santa Monica Mountains of southern California, near Malibu. Invasive species can harm native amphibians by competing for resources, transmitting disease, hybridizing, or through direct predation on adults, eggs, or larvae. Native amphibians are especially susceptible because they have not evolved mechanisms of invasive detection or avoidance. Students engaged in this class will learn the scientific method and experimental approaches in behavioral ecology to quantify predator avoidance and competition for resources, as well as correlative analysis of stream surveys comparing streams with and without the presence of invasive predators.

Examples of Student Research

Presentations by Undergrads at Scientific Conferences

Students denoted by *

Flores*, A.R., D. Green and G. Bucciarelli and L.B. Kats. 2015. Nitrate toxicity to crayfish, Procambarus clarkia, effect of nitrate pollutant runoff on hemolymph nitrate and glucose concentrations. Southern California Conferences for Undergraduate Research. OS3-B460-4:00.

Suh*, D., J. Choe*, and L.B. Kats. 2015. The impact of turbidity on the predator-prey relationship between red swamp crayfish (Procambarus clarkia) and the pacific tree frog (Pseudacris regilla) tadpoles. Southern California Conferences for Undergraduate Research. PS3-19.

Garnica*, A., T. Stucky*, and L. Kats. 2014. Effects of UV-radiation on feeding behavior in the poison dart frog, Dendrobates tinctorius. Southern California Conferences for Undergraduate Research. Abstract PS-101

Olsen* B., W. Ota*, L. Kats, and G. Bucciarelli. 2014. Effect of tetrodotoxin from Newts on invasive New Zealand mud snails. Southern California Conferences for Undergraduate Research. Abstract PS-104.

Sokolova* A., N. Huron*, A. Reimer*, L.B. Kats, and G. Bucciarelli. 2013. Effects of tetrodotoxin on New Zealand mud snails (Potamophyrgus antipodarum). Southern California Conferences for Undergraduate Research. Abstract PS3-31.

Thompson* K., L.B. Kats, and R.L. Honeycutt. 2013. Population differences in response to an invasive predator in the Pacific treefrog. Southern California Conferences for Undergraduate Research. Abstract PS2-40.

Huron*, N., G. Bucciarelli and L. Kats. 2012. A Comparison of Auditory and Visual Cues in the Territorial Behavior of the Strawberry Poison Dart Frog (Oophaga pumilio). Southern California Conferences for Undergraduate Research. Abstract PSII-9.

Liao*, J., A. Nakahara*, A. Sokolova*, J. Liao*, L. Kats and G. Bucciarelli. 2012. Activated Carbon Adsorption of Tetrodotoxin. Southern California Conferences for Undergraduate Research. Abstract PSII-7.

Novella*, N., J. Liao*, C.B. Sutter* and L. Kats. 2012. The Effects of Stream Flow on Invasive New Zealand Mudsnail, Potamopyrgus antipodarium, Dispersal. Southern California Conferences for Undergraduate Research. Abstract PSII-11.

Sutter*, C., N. Novella* and L. Kats. 2012. The Effect of UV Radiation on Aggression Levels in Oophaga pumilio, the Strawberry Poison-Dart Frog. Southern California Conferences for Undergraduate Research. Abstract PSII-8.

Thompson*, C. and L. Kats. 2012. Construction of Caddisfly (Trichoptera: Hydropsyche betteni) Cases, and Potential Benefits of Leaf Cases. Southern California Conferences for Undergraduate Research. Abstract PSII-10.

Select Recent Publications by Undergraduate Students

Students denoted by *

 

Kats, L., G. Bucciarelli, T. L. Vandergon, R. L. Honeycutt, E. Matthiasen*, A. Sanders*, S. P. Riley, J. L. Kerby, and R. N. Fisher. 2013. Effects of natural flooding and manual trapping on the facilitation of invasive crayfish-native amphibian coexistence in a semi-arid perennial stream. Journal of Arid Environments 98:109-112.

Kats, L.B., R. Van Dragt, G. Van Dragt, S. Rollert*, T. Thurling*, R. Johnson*, D. Cho*,S. Landis*. 2008. Undergraduate research: Communicating ecological field studies to local school children through outreach and curriculum. Council on Undergraduate Research Quarterly 29:58-62

Han*, Barbara A., L.B. Kats, R.C. Pommerening*, R.P. Ferrer*, M. Murry-Ewers and A.R. Blaustein. 2007. Behavioral avoidance of Ultraviolet-B radiation by two species of Neotropical Poison-Dart Frogs. Biotropica 39:433-435.

Kats, L.B. and R.P. Ferrer*. 2003. Alien predators and amphibian declines: review of two decades of science and the transition to conservation. Diversity and Distributions 9: 99-110.

Goodsell*, J.A. and L.B. Kats. 1999. Effect of introduced mosquitofish on Pacific treefrogs and the role of alternative prey. Conservation Biology. 13:921-924

Kerby*, J. L. and L. B. Kats 1998. Modified interactions between salamander life stages caused by wildfire-induced sedimentation. Ecology. 79:740-745.

Gamradt*, S. C., L. B. Kats, and C. B. Anzalone 1997. Aggression by nonnative crayfish deters breeding in California newts (Taricha torosa). Conservation Biology. 11:793-796.

Gamradt*, S. B. and L. B. Kats 1996. Effect of introduced crayfish and mosquitofish on California newts (Taricha torosa). Conservation Biology. 10:1155-1162.

Gamradt*, S. C. and L. B. Kats 1996. Impact of chaparral wildfire induced sedimentation on oviposition of stream-breeding California newts (Taricha torosa). Oecologia. 110:546-549.

Pepperdine student presents poster

Dr. Lee Kats and Pepperdine students at conference

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