Because canopy gaps are characterized by elevated temperature and decreased humidity relative to closed-canopy forest, terrestrial gastropods may be exposed to greater desiccation stress in gaps than in undisturbed forest. We placed individuals of Caracolus caracolla at the edges of canopy gaps in montane forest in Puerto Rico and observed their movements. Individuals preferentially moved out of gaps except in one gap on the first night of the study, and the proportion of individuals recaptured inside gaps decreased over time. Individuals moved, on average, farther into forest than into gaps. Juveniles and adults responded similarly. These results suggest that C. caracolla actively avoids canopy gaps, and that its activity and ability to disperse are restricted in a post-disturbance environment.
Bloch, C.P., & Stock. M. (2014). Avoidance of Canopy Gaps by a Common Land Snail, Caracolus caracolla (L.), in Montane Forest in Puerto Rico. Caribbean Naturalist 8, 1-13.
Virtual Commons Citation
Bloch, Christopher P. and Stock, Michael (2014). Avoidance of Canopy Gaps by a Common Land Snail. In Biological Sciences Faculty Publications. Paper 41.
Available at: http://vc.bridgew.edu/biol_fac/41
This article was originally published in the Caribbean Naturalist (http://www.eaglehill.us/programs/journals/cana/caribbean-naturalist.shtml), published by Eagle Hill Institute. Eagle Hill Institute reserves the copyright to all its publications. Any reproduction, other than for an individual's own personal and private use, or distribution of journal content is prohibited without written permission from Eagle Hill Institute.