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A Survey of the Herpetofauna of the Comanche National Grasslands in Southeastern Colorado

Appendix 7:

Photographs of selected habitat and species of amphibians and
reptiles observered during the 1995-1997 field seasons

JPG -- Shortgrass and mixed grass prairie
Typical shortgrass and mixed grass prairie which covers much of southeastern Colorado. Note the continuous coverage of grasses, which is required by many amphibian and reptile species for cover and also provides forage for larger animals such as pronghorn antelope.
JPG -- Overgrazed prairie with fecal contamination
Heavily overgrazed prairie with extensive fecal contamination, frequently seen in Baca County. Overgrazing reduces the extent and diversity of plant species, which in turn affects insect species, which in turn negatively affects insectivorous amphibian and reptile abundance. Soil compaction and fouling of ponds can also result, leading to decreased breeding success. However, grazing per se is not incompatible with conservation of native herpetofauna, if rotation of herds allows recovery of forbs.

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