Analysis of the adaptive value of Scinax machadoi and Bokermannohyla martinsi tadpole coloration against potential predators at a site in Southeastern Brazil

About The Project

This project aims to investigate potential adaptive roles of colors and behaviors of Scinax machadoi and Bokermannohyla martinsi tadpoles for defense against visually oriented predators. We are testing bird predation upon these tadpoles on different backgrounds, as well as background choice by the tadpoles and whether their choice improves the potential effects of their likely cryptic/disruptive colorations. We are testing whether Scinax machadoi tadpoles choose backgrounds that turn them less visible to predators and whether B. martinsi tadpoles choose backgrounds that stress their potentially aposematic coloration in the presence of predators. Experiments with birds are also being conducted to test whether B. martinsi tadpoles are really unpalatable (aposematic).