Aim There is substantial residual scatter about the positive range size–body size relationship in Australian frogs. We test whether species’ life history and abundance can account for this residual scatter.
Methods Multiple regressions were performed using both cross-species and independent contrasts analyses to determine whether clutch size, egg size and species abundance account for variation in range size over and above the effects of body size.
Results In both cross-species and independents contrasts models with body size, clutch size and egg size as predictors, partial r2 values revealed that only egg size was significantly and uniquely related to range size. Contrary to expectation, neither body size nor clutch size could account for significant variation in range size. Incorporating species abundance as a predictor in further multiple regression analysis demonstrated that while abundance accounted for a significant proportion of range size variation, the contribution of egg size was reduced but still significant. Notably, non-significant relationships persisted between range size and both body size and clutch size.
Conclusions The weak positive correlation between body size and range size in Australian frogs disappears after accounting for species abundance and egg size. Our findings demonstrate that species with both high local abundance and small eggs occupy comparatively wider geographical ranges than species with low abundance and large eggs.