Our studies of the association between the lesser earless lizard (Holbrookia maculata) and Gunnison's prairie dogs (Cynomys gunnisoni) revealed: (1) the lesser earless lizard was more abundant on prairie dog colonies than off; (2) lesser earless lizard abundance was positively correlated with prairie dog burrow abundance; (3) lesser earless lizards responded positively to artificial burrows created on noncolonized areas; and (4) lesser earless lizards used prairie dog burrows as refuges from predators; however, the relative use of burrows was greatest at high and low temperature extremes. Although prairie dogs alter habitat in many ways, our study suggests that burrows are an important mechanism involved in the association between the lesser earless lizard and Gunnison's prairie dogs.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||American Midland Naturalist|
|State||Published - Oct 2003|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics