, Volume 299, Issue 1, pp 53-73

Observations on temporary waters in northwestern Australia

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The results of preliminary investigations of ephemeral waters of the wet-dry tropics are reported. These poorly known but extensive habitats cover much of the seasonally inundated land of northern Australia. Brief descriptions of the physicochemical characteristics of four contrasting sites are given along with a listing of the non-benthic fauna that utilize them. Ninety-six invertebrate taxa and eighteen species of vertebrates were recorded. Anuran amphibians were particularly abundant in these systems and their patterns of utilization of these temporary waters is described. Because of their seasonal abundance, tadpoles and young frogs are likely to be important prey for a suite of both invertebrate and vertebrate predators.