Zhigao ZENG,Zhensheng LIU,Jinyun WEI,et al.Desertification Drives the Shift in Egg Size-Number Trade-Off in an Agamid Lizard[J].Asian Herpetological Research(AHR),2022,13(4):284-291.[doi:10.16373/j.cnki.ahr.220013]
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Desertification Drives the Shift in Egg Size-Number Trade-Off in an Agamid Lizard
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Asian Herpetological Research[ISSN:2095-0357/CN:51-1735/Q]

2022 VoI.13 No.4
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Desertification Drives the Shift in Egg Size-Number Trade-Off in an Agamid Lizard
Zhigao ZENG1 Zhensheng LIU23 Jinyun WEI12 Xiaolei ZHANG12 and Weiguo DU1*
1 Key Laboratory of Animal Ecology and Conservation Biology, Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China
2 College of Wildlife Resources, Northeast Forestry University, Harbin 150040, Heilongjiang, China
3 Key Laboratory of Conservation Biology, State Forestry Administration, Harbin 150040, Heilongjiang, China
desert adaptation egg life history Phrynocephalus przewalskii reptile trade-off
Desertification is a serious ecological problem leading to significant biodiversity loss, but how desertification drives shifts in life history and fitness of animals remains understudied. To clarify whether habitat desertification causes shifts in life history strategies, we compared ecological factors and reproductive traits of Phrynocephalus przewalskii from three different desertification habitats – fixed dune, semi-fixed dune and mobile dune of a semi-arid region of Inner Mongolia, at the eastern edge of Hobq Desert, China. Our results showed a significant shift in the egg size-number trade-off of P. przewalskii in response to desertification, with lizards from the mobile dune habitat producing smaller clutches of larger eggs than lizards from the fixed and semi-fixed dune habitats. This life history shift is likely adaptive and driven by abiotic factors (temperature and precipitation) rather than biotic factors (food availability and lizard population density). Our study demonstrates that habitat desertification drives the shift in egg size-number trade-off in a lizard and highlights the importance of exploring the life history responses of animals to habitat desertification as well as to other traditionally well-studied factors like temperature, especially in the context of future global climate change.


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Last Update: 2022-12-25