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Movement patterns and home range in Diplomystes camposensis (Siluriformes: Diplomystidae), an endemic and threatened species from Chile

posted on 04.04.2018, 02:44 by Alejandra Oyanedel, Evelyn Habit, Mark C. Belk, Katherin Solis-Lufí, Nicole Colin, Jorge Gonzalez, Alfonso Jara, Carlos. P. Muñoz-Ramírez

ABSTRACT We document movement patterns and home range of Diplomystes camposensis, an endemic and threatened freshwater catfish from Chile. We tracked the movements of seven individuals of different body size (13.5 to 19 cm SL) using portable radio telemetry equipment to investigate movement patterns in relation to day/night activity and habitat use in the San Pedro River (Valdivia Basin). Tracked movements and model-based analyses revealed that D. camposensis has a large home range and high mobility. The average home range was 0.068163 ± 0.033313 km2, and the average area of higher activity was 0.005646 ± 0.011386 km2. The mean linear home range was 387.4 m. The results also showed that movements were longer during the night, supporting nocturnal habits. Movements tended to be in an upstream direction for some individuals, although these differences were not significant when data was pooled. Large home range and movements suggest that the species may require large river areas to meet ecological demands, an aspect that could be severely affected by fragmentation. These results, along with previously published genetic data, suggest that the conservation of D. camposensis would be seriously threatened by hydromorphological alterations (e.g. lack of connectivity), such as those resulting from dam building.