Amphibians and Reptiles of the Great Falls Bypassed Reaches in South Carolina

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Abstract/Description: An inventory was conducted of the amphibians and reptiles inhabiting the Great Falls Bypassed Reaches of the Catawba River in South Carolina. A list of 85 species of amphibians and reptiles potentially occurring in the Great Falls Bypassed Reaches was generated using known distributional ranges and museum records. A variety of survey techniques were used to document the occurrence of 42 species of these amphibians and reptiles, including 12 species of anurans, 6 salamanders, 7 turtles, 6 lizards, and 11 snakes. No species of amphibian or reptile considered rare, threatened or endangered by the state of South Carolina or the federal government was documented. Numerous ephemeral wetlands within the Great Falls Bypassed Reaches provide habitat for several species of amphibians and some reptiles that would likely otherwise not occur there. Adding resource enhancement flows of water, including intentional periodic flooding or spate high water events, to the bypassed reaches will likely eliminate or significantly disturb these wetlands, thus lowering habitat diversity and reducing or eliminating some populations of these species, while potentially creating habitat for riverine species.
Subject(s): amphibians
reptiles
Catawba River
herpetology