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Article 3

Definition of a methodological search technique for the common chameleon for use in the preventive measures of infrastructure projects

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M. A. Farfán1,2*, J. Duarte1,2, R. Real2, J. M. Vargas2
1 Biogea Consultores, Calle Navarro Ledesma 243, 29010 Málaga, Spain
2 Departamento de Biología Animal, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de Málaga, E-29071 Málaga, Spain
* Corresponding author: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

ABSTRACT. – The proliferation of infrastructure projects, such as highways, railways and canals, is having an unavoidable impact on local fauna (habitat destruction and fragmentation, the barrier effect or mortality by collision). The infrastructure construction period itself also has a great impact on fauna. The breeding period of species is threatened and eggs, the young and adults may undergo disruption. European governments have developed much environmental legislation to minimize the impact of infrastructure projects on the natural world. However, many initiatives to protect environmental wealth are ineffective due to the lack of scientific advice. A clear example is the case of the common chameleon (Chamaeleo chamaeleon Linnaeus, 1758) in Spain. We compare the efficiency of the capture methodology used for the common chameleon, as recommended by the Spanish government, to that of an alternative method. Both methods differ in sampling effort, speed of advance and sampling-hours. According to our results, the most appropriate method to search for the common chameleon is at night while employing a slow speed of advance, thus validating the alternative method. This is the most effective approach: it yields more captures than other methods and the search period does not have to last for many consecutive hours. If the methodology described in the present study were implemented, it would provide better results regarding captures and have a more positive effect on the conservation of this species in Europe.

You are here: Volume 61 (2011) Issue 3 Article 3
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