Document Type


Date of Degree Completion

Winter 2015

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



Committee Chair

Ronald Wagner

Second Committee Member

Wayne Quirk

Third Committee Member

Robert Weaver


Intraspecific interactions are an important factor in shaping the population structure of terrestrial salamanders. Both physical interactions and scent-marking are vital components to the establishment of territories and influence dispersion of individuals. However, little is known about the terrestrial interactions of many salamander species, particularly that of the Coastal Giant Salamander (Dicamptodon tenebrosus). In this study, I observed the first evidence for the use chemical cues by terrestrial D. tenerosus in regards to shelter selection. I also observed the first accounts of agonistic and display behavior of terrestrial D. tenebrosus. These results suggest that terrestrial D. tenebrosus utilize chemical cues in their selection of refuge sites, and that they also display aggressive, territorial behavior.

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