Following the footsteps of Burmeister’s leaf frog (Phyllomedusa burmeisteri) in the Atlantic forest of Brazil
Amphibians are organisms which mainly have a biphasic life cycle. When at the larval stage, their
habitat is generally aquatic, and when adults, they become terrestrial. Pond-breeding amphibians
are sensitive to some disturbances in their environment which lead to the decline of a population.
The interactions between the species and their environment are performed through movement. Movement ecology combines and explains the movement data of organisms with biotic and abiotic factors and because of this, knowing the movement of these creatures is of great ecological importance. We used the spool-and-line methodology in individuals of the treefrog Phyllomedusa burmeisteri, at the Reserva Ecologica Michelin, located in the southern region of Bahia in Brazil to study their movement patterns in different environments inside and outside of the forest. We monitored 19 P. burmeisteri individuals that presented a mean total movement distance of 2160.76 cm (S.D. 1152.42). We found no significant difference in the trajectories of individuals in forested and open areas, as well as a positive relationship between the distances individuals moved and their weight only in forested areas. no relationship between distance and weight of these individuals. We observed that individuals followed non-linear paths and the number of steps from one place to another varied among individuals. Our movement ecology data allows us to answer questions about short-term movement patterns of Phyllomedusa burmeisteri. This is the first step to start understanding the spatial cognition of treefrogs from the Atlantic Forest and to fill gaps about life habits of these frogs. Information on the movement patterns of a species, as well as its home range can help to create conservation strategies, regarding the creation or delimitation of protected areas, for example.