Marcos Vaira

Marcos Vaira
National Scientific and Technical Research Council | conicet · INECOA - Instituto de Ecorregiones Andinas

Doctor
Investigador Independiente INECOA (UNJu - CONICET) Profesor Adjunto Simple, Facultad de Ciencias Agrarias - UNJu

About

68
Publications
24,387
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Introduction
My research interests are focused on the study of diversity and life histories of anurans of the Subtropical Mountain Forest of NW Argentina. The aim is to contribute to a better understanding of the way communities structure themselves to provide a solid basis for their conservation. The projects seek to understand how we can mitigate the effect of human intervention. More recently we include to our studies diversity of butterflies.
Additional affiliations
August 2019 - December 2021
Centro Cientifico Tecnologico Conicet Salta - Jujuy
Position
  • Managing Director
September 2018 - September 2019
Centro Cientifico Tecnologico Conicet Salta - Jujuy
Position
  • Managing Director
June 2016 - December 2021
National Scientific and Technical Research Council
Position
  • Managing Director
Education
October 1996 - June 2000
April 1984 - August 1991

Publications

Publications (68)
Article
Competition among males can be a decisive factor for successful mating in anuran explosive breeders with a male-biased population sex ratio. The Yungas Red-belly Toad (Melanophryniscus rubriventris (Vellard, 1947)) is an explosive breeder where males exhibit a classic scramble competition. We studied the body size, body condition, and stress-induce...
Book
Full-text available
El Plan de Acción para la Conservación de los Anfibios de la República Argentina que reseña un conjunto de 47 acciones que responden a 18 problemáticas identificadas, agrupadas en 6 componentes que pueden acometerse en plazos preestablecidos. El Plan propone ejecutar estas acciones que los especialistas convocados han considerado prioritarias o nec...
Article
Full-text available
Urbanization is one of the most important causes of ecological changes and biodiversity loss worldwide, and forests in Latin America provide valuable scenarios to understand the ecological effects of this human-driven phenomenon due to its high urbanization rate. Our aim was to investigate how urbanization shapes species richness (SR) and compositi...
Book
Full-text available
El objetivo principal de este Manual es el desarrollo de un compendio de técnicas y protocolos estándares para el inventario y monitoreo de poblaciones de anfibios, actualizado con los procedimientos, herramientas y técnicas de análisis más recientes y adaptado a las condiciones y realidades nacionales. Su contenido está destinado a ayudar a supera...
Article
Anuran amphibians that breed in ephemeral ponds of unpredictable environments have mechanisms to tolerate or avoid associated risks of egg and tadpole mortality, such as selection of oviposition sites, plasticity in larval development, and resistance of eggs to desiccation. The Red-belly Toad Melanophryniscus rubriventris (Vellard 1947) breeds in t...
Article
In this work, we update and increase knowledge on the severity and extent of threats affecting 57 populations of 46 amphibian species from Chile and Argentina in southern South America. We analyzed the intrinsic conservation problems that directly impact these populations. We shared a questionnaire among specialists on threats affecting target amph...
Article
Identifying adequate methods and tools for biodiversity monitoring is fundamental in ecology and conservation biology. Most of the standardised monitoring techniques involve the presence of the researchers at the survey sites meanwhile, passive acoustic monitoring (PAM) of the diversity of anuran species could be a valid alternative. In this study,...
Article
1. Modification and loss of natural habitats caused by human activities are among the main drivers of biodiversity decline worldwide. To evaluate how land-use changes affect species diversity at different spatial scales, amphibians represent an excellent group given that their complex life cycle requires both aquatic and terrestrial habitats. 2. In...
Article
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In September 2005, the IUCN Species Survival Commission (SSC) held a summit for the conservation of amphibians where specialists from around the world agreed that, in addition to the need to document the declines and extinctions, we need to promote action strategies designed to respond to the global biodiversity crisis. The outcome of this summit w...
Article
Light pollution or artificial lighting at night (ALAN) is an emerging threat to biodiversity that can disrupt physiological processes and behaviors. Because ALAN stressful effects are little studied in diurnal amphibian species, we investigated if chronic ALAN exposure affects the leukocyte profile, body condition, and blood cell sizes of a diurnal...
Article
Full-text available
Bat diversity in riparian environments of Selva Pedemontana in the Yungas of Jujuy province, Argentina. Riparian environments are important to conserve the fauna that lives in these environments or uses them as corridors between fragmented areas. Bats exploit landscape elements differentially, and among them riparian environments are useful to meet...
Article
Natural habitats have drastically regressed due to rapid changes in land-use during recent decades, generating a decrease in species diversity. In light of natural habitat destruction worldwide, there is a need to adopt an integrative approach to the study of biodiversity in order to better assess the magnitude of diversity loss in landscapes affec...
Article
The Yungas Redbelly Toad, Melanophryniscus rubriventris, is patchily distributed in Argentina, confined to the upland portion (1000 to 2000 meters above sea level) of the montane forests of northern and central regions of Salta, and in central-eastern and south-eastern Jujuy. This species is known for its striking aposematic color variation across...
Poster
Full-text available
Existe una necesidad imperiosa de medir y predecir la forma en que las actividades humanas afectan los ambientes naturales, por considerarse una de las principales causas de declinación de la diversidad de anfibios a escala global. Los anfibios pueden ser especialmente susceptibles a los efectos de la pérdida de hábitat y cambios en el uso del suel...
Poster
Full-text available
La modificación de los ambientes naturales debido a las actividades humanas es una de las principales causas de declinación de la diversidad de anfibios a escala global. La composición y configuración del paisaje determinan la diversidad de anuros presentes en un área geográfica determinada. Este estudio explora las relaciones entre la diversidad d...
Article
Full-text available
In spite of many recent studies addressing the adaptive significance or ecological implications of coloration in poison frogs, most attention has been paid to its function and little is known about the relationship between pigment composition and skin colour expression. It has been stressed that a variety of pigment types could contribute to integu...
Article
Full-text available
We present a review on the conservation status of the 177 species and subspecies of amphibians of Argentina and compare the first national assessment, conducted in 2000, with the most recent one, from 2012, to determine changes in conservation status over time. We also evaluate the degree of taxonomic and geographic non-randomness in extinction ris...
Article
Full-text available
In anuran species with short breeding seasons, an extension of diel activity to the night hours could be favoured to maximize mating opportunities but individuals must deal with physiological and behavioural constraints. We tested this hypothesis in the Yungas red-belly toad, Melanophryniscus rubriventris (Vellard, 1947). We registered diel pattern...
Article
Full-text available
Amphibians detect quality signals when selecting reproduction sites. We hypothesize that Melanophryniscus rubriventris, an explosive breeding toad that reproduces in small, ephemeral water bodies, is able to select sites without predators. We performed a field experiment simulating oviposition sites, two with predators (tadpoles and bugs) and one c...
Article
Full-text available
Climate often regulates different aspects of the life cycle and activity of amphibians. Climatic seasonality may impose severe restrictions on breeding patterns of direct-developing terraranan frogs. We studied the influence of abiotic cues on calling activity of males of the direct-developing frog Oreobates discoidalis in the Yungas forests of nor...
Book
Full-text available
Introducción La Selva de las Yungas es una de las ecorregiones con mayor biodiversidad de Argentina. Hasta el momento se han registrado unas 39 especies de anfibios anuros en estas selvas, de las cuales 12 son endemismos estrictos de esta ecorregión. Las especies restantes se comparten en su mayoría con la ecorregión del Chaco Árido-en las partes b...
Article
Full-text available
Elachistocleis haroi sp. nov. is described from El Algarrobal, Jujuy province, north-western Argentina. The new species is diagnosed by the dorsal pattern of mid-longitudinal bright yellow stripe from the intraocular zone, surpassing the postcephalic transverse skin fold, to vent; dorsum grayish brown mottled with a paravertebral symmetric pattern...
Article
Full-text available
A más de una década de la primera Lista Roja de herpetofauna propuesta por la Asociación Herpetológica Argentina (Lavilla et al., 2000), se recategorizaron los anfibios a partir de nueva información taxonómica, biogeográfica, bio-ecológica y de modificaciones metodológicas respecto a la evaluación anterior. Mediante la participación de 35 especiali...
Article
Full-text available
GC-MS analysis of single-skins of ten Melanophryniscus rubriventris toads (five collections of two toads each) captured during their breeding season in NW Argentina has revealed a total of 127 alkaloids of which 56 had not been previously detected in any frog or toad. Included among these new alkaloids are 23 new diastereomers of previously reporte...
Article
Full-text available
We revisit species diversity within Oreobates (Anura: Strabomantidae) by combining molecular phylogenetic analyses of the 16S rRNA amphibian barcode fragment with the study of the external morphology of living and preserved specimens. Molecular and morphological evidence support the existence of 23 species within Oreobates, and three additional can...
Article
Full-text available
The aposematic toad genus Melanophryniscus is a polymorphic group with noticeable variation in colour and pattern. Here, we objectively evaluate variation in spectral reflectance and quantify variation in patterning within and among populations of the species M. rubriventris in NW Argentina. We conducted spectrophotometric analysis on 69 individual...
Article
Full-text available
The three species of Gastrotheca known in Argentina are strictly endemic to NW subtropical Yungas Andean forests (Lavilla & Heatwole, 2010). Limited to the eastern slopes of the Andes, between 700 and 2600 m.a.s.l. (Akmentins et al., 2011) represent the southernmost distributional range of the neotropical marsupial frogs of the family Hemiphractida...
Article
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We quantitatively describe the vocal repertoire (advertisement and aggressive calls) of the endangered marsupial frog, Gastrotheca christiani from NW Argentina, comparing the spectral and temporal characteristics of vocalizations with other members of G. marsupiata species group.
Article
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Few studies have investigated the level of individual variation in diet composition of poisonous frogs and toads. We compare the diet composition of three populations of a poisonous toad, Melanophryniscus rubriventris, and predicted that toads within a population might be constrained to forage on particular types of alkaloid-containing prey and con...
Article
Full-text available
Three species of marsupial frogs of the genus Gastrotheca are at the forefront of amphibian conservation concern in Argentina. Most of the data available on these amphibian species in the country are in the form of museum collections. In this study, we use the recent rediscovery of G. gracilis to test the applicability of a series of probabilistic...
Article
Full-text available
We report the first record of Tomodon orestes Harvey and Muñoz, 2004 for Argentina. An adult male wascollected in November 2008 in an open grassland habitat in the locality of Vallecito, Santa Victoria department, Saltaprovince, Argentina. This new record is the southernmost locality for the species extending its distribution range ca. 95 kmstraigh...
Chapter
Full-text available
Amphibians in premontane forests of Argentina and Bolivia: diversity and distribution patterns and conservation status. We present a list of amphibian species in premontane forests in the southern Andean Yungas of Argentina and Bolivia, analyzing patterns of local and regional diversity and distribution. We also assess the conservation status of sp...
Article
Full-text available
Oreobates barituensis sp. nov. is described from the ecoregion of southern Andean Yungas forests of north-western Argentina at elevations of 1100 to 1300 m above see level. It shares morphological characters with the sympatric and syntopic O. discoidalis, as well as with O. ibischi and O. cruralis from Bolivia. The recognition of the new species is...
Article
Full-text available
En este trabajo, analizamos y describimos la estructura del canto de anuncio de ejemplares de una población de Oreobates discoidalis proveniente de una región de selva de montaña del Noroeste de Argentina (Ecorregión de las Yungas Andinas del Sur, según Dinerstein et al., 1995) y efectuamos una comparación con los parámetros espectrales y temporale...
Article
Full-text available
The structure of the acoustic signal in anurans has been considered species-specific and used even for the recognition of new indistinguishable species by morphologic characters. In this work, we presented a description of the structure of the call of Melanophryniscus rubriventris and a comparative analysis of spectral and temporal parameters of th...
Article
Full-text available
Increasing evidence shows that alkaloids in the skins of poisonous frogs are sequestered from a specialized diet of ants. It is considered likely that in the small aposematic bufonid genus Melanophryniscus, skin alkaloids are taken up via a similar system. However, quantitative aspects of the diet in this genus remain poorly studied. As a result, s...
Article
Full-text available
Bufonid toads of the genus Melanophryniscus represent one of several lineages of anurans with the ability to sequester alkaloids from dietary arthropods for chemical defense. The alkaloid profile for Melanophryniscus stelzneri from a location in the province of Córdoba, Argentina, changed significantly over a 10-year period, probably indicating cha...
Article
Full-text available
We determined the toxicity and bioactivity of alkaloids extracted from Coronopus dydimus (L.), quimpe collected in Laguna de Pozuelos, Jujuy. We tested acute toxicity in worms Eisenia andrei following OCDE protocols (1984) and bioactivity tests in Artemia salina. The alkaloids fraction obtained from Coronopus dydimus has a DL50 = 3,498 mg/ml in Eis...
Article
Full-text available
Oviposition-site selection plays an important role in the reproductive success of amphibians. In unpredictable environments where resources vary within a season, amphibians should select oviposition sites using parameters that can be easily evaluated, or spawn in several ponds to increase offspring survival. Melanophryniscus rubriventris (Vellard,...
Article
Full-text available
Climate may play a direct role in determining patterns of reproductive activity in anurans. Investigating the responses of males and females attending a breeding site to environmental variation are of particular interest regardless the possible effect of climate change on the decline of populations. I studied annual variation over two years in the...
Article
Full-text available
I review geographical distribution, levels of infection and intraspecific morphological variation of Polystoma andinum Combes and Laurent, 1978 from the anuran host Melanophryniscus rubriventris . Also, I provide further information on the breeding biology of the host. The geographical distribution of P. andinum is extended further to the north and...
Article
Full-text available
Elachistocleis skotogaster spec. nov. is described from the Andean Yungas of Argentina. It is unique in the genus in having belly and legs densely spotted with brown, an uniformly dark brown dorsal mottled with black, absence of a light vertebral strip, a fold behind the mouth but not a postcommisural gland. Its natural history and advertisement ca...
Article
Full-text available
Both, patterns and hue of dorsal and ventral coloration were commonly utilized in species and subspecies recognition in the genus of Bufonidae Melanophryniscus. However, no detailed and systematized analysis were presented to determine if such characters are truly fixed. I determine the validity of these attributes as truly diagnostic characters in...
Article
Full-text available
The species composition, reproductive ecology, and patterns of activitywere determined for an anuran assemblage of an area of subtropical montaneforest in northwest Argentina. Twenty-four species were recorded at ParqueNacional Calilegua, Province of Jujuy. This study reflects a 75% increase in thenumber of species reported in previous surveys. Mos...
Article
Full-text available
Spawning behavior, clutch characteristics, and egg deposition site of the leaf frog, Phyllomedusa boliviana, were described at an arti cial pool in a subtropical montane forest of Jujuy, Argentina. Mating behavior was observed during the wet season (November-January) in unmarked frogs on eight separate occasions. A pre-spawning period characterized...
Article
Full-text available
The spatial distribution and its relationship with altitudinal gradient and aquatic breeding sites availability were determined for an anuran assemblage of an area of Subtropical Montane Forest in northwest Argentina (Andean Yungas). Nineteen species were recorded in 13 sites sampled. Species richness decreased at upper sites and species compositio...
Article
Full-text available
In America, most of the research on anuran breeding behavior have dealt with north temperate or Neotropical species, and very little attention has been paid to the reproductive behavior of southern South American species. Physalaemus cuqui, a leptodactylid frog found throughout much of the northwestern Argentina, was originally considered a norther...
Article
Full-text available
La porción argentina de la Ecorregión Yungas Andinas incluye las selvas de montaña de las provincias de Jujuy, Salta, Tucumán y Catamarca, donde se extiende como una faja que se ubica entre los 300 y 3000 m s.n.m. por aproximadamente 800 km de longitud N-S. Allí se han registrado hasta el momento 39 especies, siendo la familia Leptodactylidae la me...
Article
Full-text available
Melanophryniscus rubriventris rubriventris larvae are described based on 18 individuals in stages 31-34 of Gosner's (1960) developmental table. They are similar to other tadpoles of Melanophryniscus in terms of overall morphology, but differ from Melanophryniscus moreirae, M. orejasmirandai, and M. sanmartini in the formula of keratodont rows, from...

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Projects (5)
Project
The aim is to estimate the occupation of the breeding- ponds used by three species of anurans with different life habits and reproductive modes in a landscape modified by human activities. From this, to calculate connectivity of the occupied sites and define relevant areas that allow better planning of land management and the design of conservation areas that favour the persistence and viability of the populations of the three species in the long term.