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Abstract

Aquatic salamanders represent an important component of Virginia river watersheds, but despite potential declines, few specifics are known about their habitat preferences. We surveyed the habitats of the northern two-lined salamander and collected data on an array of habitat variables associated with the species. We used a logistic regression analysis to develop a model predicting its presence or absence for a given 50m-transect. Our final model incorporated the variation in stream depth and direction of stream flow and accounted for 25% of the variation in our data. We conclude that stream depth variation is an important feature of salamander habitat ecology, and surmise that direction of flow is of site-specific importance possibly related to stream order. Both features may be behavioral adaptations to avoid fish predation.

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