The Impact of Hurricane Hugo on Forest Frogs in Puerto Rico

The Impact of Hurricane Hugo on Forest Frogs in Puerto Rico
Lawrence L. Woolbright
Vol. 23, No. 4, Part A. Special Issue: Ecosystem, Plant, and Animal Responses to Hurricanes in the Caribbean (Dec., 1991), pp. 462-467

Hurricane Hugo caused extensive damage to the Luquillo Experimental Forest in September 1989 Individually marked Eleutherodactylus coqui were monitored in two study plots from January 1987 through October 1990. Survivorship estimates of adults for the period including the storm were within the normal range from previous years. Juveniles suffered severe reductions, primarily among the smaller size classes. By October 1990 adult population density had increased fourfold over prehurricane levels, although adults were smaller. Juvenile numbers also appeared to be increasing, but had not yet reached prehurricane densities. The rapid increase in density may have resulted from an increase in retreat sites and a decrease in invertebrate predators. Auditory censuses suggested that density changes for other species ranged from a 14 percent increase for the relatively common E. hedricki to an 83 percent decrease for the relatively rare E. richmondi.