J. L. Boone, Ph.D., Ecology

Final Draft:
Susceptibility of reptiles at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, to capture using three sampling methods: noosing, pitfall traps, and funnel traps.


Studies of species diversity rely on accurate floral and faunal lists as the basis for analysis, however the adequacy of sampling designs to determine species composition and relative abundance has always been a problem, and studies continue to demonstrate that many faunal assemblages contain species variously susceptible to different sampling procedures and different sampling biases. Here, data are provided on the susceptibility of certain desert reptiles to capture using three sampling methods (noosing, pitfall traps, and funnel traps) at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, a site considered by the U.S. Department of Energy for storing high-level nuclear waste.

Combined, reptile sampling efforts resulted in 6,959 captures of 3,405 individuals and documented the presence of 23 species (10 lizards, 12 snakes, and 1 tortoise). However, each sampling method produced a different list of species; and combined, these techniques missed 5 species (2 lizards, and 3 snakes) that were detected using other methods. We caught 17 species in funnel traps, 12 species in pitfall traps, and 17 species using nooses.

Link to PDF of the article.

Note: My management, not the scientific community, prevented publication of these data.

Note: All distances, elevations, and other facts are approximate.
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