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An inventory of the herpetofauna of the Middlefork Farm Nature Preserve in Lake Forest, Illinois
Snyder, Claire Elizabeth
May 9, 2012
Biology - Environmental Studies
The Middlefork Savanna is a 275 hectare fragmented ecosystem in northeastern Illinois that is notable for its intact oak savanna habitat. The Lake Forest Open Lands Association restored a 24 hectare portion of this area in the late 1990s. This organization wanted to determine the impacts of its restoration efforts on local herpetofauna. A research team undertook a field survey in order to determine reptile and amphibian distributions and to identify species present. We recorded a total of seven species and 394 individuals, of which 27.4% of individuals were reptiles and 72.6% were amphibians. We found species across the property with the exception of the eastern region. This disparity in the eastern savanna may be due to a yearly community event hosted in that area, though more study is needed. The data collected during this study created a baseline for future studies and indicate that reptile and amphibian species seem to be thriving in a restored environment.
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