Relationships between green anoles (Anolis carolinensis) and shrub-level vegetation in fire-maintained longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) forests of eastern Texas.
We examined habitat use by Anolis carolinensis (Green Anole) at perch heights =5 m, particularly in relation to woody shrub-level vegetation, in fire-maintained Pinus palustris (Longleaf Pine) forest stands on the Angelina National Forest in eastern Texas. We surveyed Green Anoles in 2 stands, within 20 established plots per stand with varying shrub densities, during June (breeding season) and August (post-breeding season) for 3 years. An unforeseen prescribed fire in 1 stand provided an opportunity to examine the effects of fire on anoles and their habitat. Only adults were found during June. Adult detections decreased substantially, and juveniles predominated during August. The number of Green Anole detections was positively correlated with the number and volume (m3) of shrub-level plants. Also, anoles selected shrub-level plants with greater than average width, height, and volume. Larger shrubs provide more display perches and escape routes as well as greater protective cover from predators, and perhaps greater availability of arthropod prey.