Year of Publication

2022

Degree Name

Master of Science in Forest and Natural Resource Sciences (MSFNRS)

Document Type

Master's Thesis

College

Agriculture, Food and Environment

Department/School/Program

Forestry and Natural Resources

First Advisor

Dr. Steven Price

Abstract

Having only emerged as a threat to snakes in 2006, relatively little is known of snake fungal disease’s (SFD) impacts on demographic processes, particularly survival and growth. I used data from an extensive capture-mark-recapture study to examine survival and growth in central Kentucky Queensnake (Regina septemivittata) populations. I found that diseased snakes and healthy snakes possessed similar monthly survival estimates (SFD positive 0.9687, 95% CI 0.8444 to 0.9944; SFD negative 0.8735, 95% CI 0.7518 to 0.9402) and that disease state transition probability from SFD negative to SFD positive, and SFD positive to SFD negative were also similar (N-P 0.4807, 95% CI 0.3395 to 0.6251; P-N 0.3461 95% CI 0.2523 to 0.4536). Additionally, I found that diseased snakes exhibited heightened growth rates (1.12 mm/month females, 0.91 mm/month males) compared to healthy snakes (0.73 mm/month females, 0.59 mm/month males).

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

https://doi.org/10.13023/etd.2022.348

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