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Effective conservation of amphibian populations requires the prediction of how amphibians use and move through a landscape. Amphibians are closely coupled to their physical environment. Thus an approach that uses the physiological attributes of amphibians, together with knowledge of their natural history, should be helpful. We used Niche Mapper? to model the known movements and habitat use patterns of a population of Western toads (Anaxyrus (=Bufo) boreas) occupying forested habitats in southeastern Idaho. Niche Mapper uses first principles of environmental biophysics to combine features of topography, climate, land cover, and animal features to model microclimates and animal physiology and behavior across landscapes....
The Anaxyrus boreas species group currently comprises four species in western North America including the broadly distributed A. boreas, and three localized species, Anaxyrus nelsoni, Anaxyrus exsul and Anaxyrus canorus. Phylogenetic analyses of the mtDNA 12S rDNA, cytochrome oxidase I, control region, and restriction sites data, identified three major haplotype clades. The Northwest clade (NW) includes both subspecies of A. boreas and divergent minor clades in the middle Rocky Mountains, coastal, and central regions of the west and Pacific Northwest. The Southwest (SW) clade includes A. exsul, A. nelsoni, and minor clades in southern California. Anaxyrus canorus, previously identified as paraphyletic, has populations...