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Spatially segregated foraging patterns of moose (Alces alces) and mountain hare (Lepus timidus) in a subarctic landscape: different tables in the same restaurant?
Mittuniversitetet, Avdelningen för naturvetenskap.
Swedish Univ Agr Sci, Dept Wildlife Fish & Environm Studies, S-90183 Umea, Sweden.
James Hutton Inst, Aberdeen AB15 8QH, Scotland, UK.
Responsible organisation
2015 (English)In: Canadian Journal of Zoology, ISSN 0008-4301, E-ISSN 1480-3283, Vol. 93, no 5, 391-396 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Differences in body sizes of mountain hares (Lepus timidus L., 1758) and moose (Alces alces (L., 1758)) affect their abilityto perceive and respond to environmental heterogeneity and plant density. Therefore, we expect these species to show nicheseparation at different scales in the same environment. Results showed that the numbers of mountain birches (Betula pubescenssubsp. czerepanovii L.) browsed by moose per unit area was inversely related to hare browsing. Moose browsed larger birchescompared with hares, and while hares targeted areas with high birch densities regardless of tree sizes, moose preferentiallybrowsed areas with high densities of large birches. Moose browsing was clustered at spatial intervals of 1000–1500 m, while harebrowsing was clustered at intervals of less than 500 m. Willows (genus Salix L.) in the study area were heavily browsed by moose,while few observations of hare browsing on willow were made. Regarding both hare and moose, numbers of birch stems withnew browsing per sample plot were positively correlated with the numbers of birch stems with old browsing, indicating thathare and moose preferred the same foraging sites from year to year. These findings have implications for management of thespecies because they show the importance of scale and landscape perspectives in planning and actions.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 93, no 5, 391-396 p.
Keyword [en]
moose, Alces alces, mountain hare, Lepus timidus, resource use, niche separation, spatial scale.
National Category
Natural Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:polar:diva-3711DOI: 10.1139/cjz-2014-0332ISI: 000354125500008Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-84929087318OAI: oai:DiVA.org:polar-3711DiVA: diva2:1105187
Available from: 2015-05-23 Created: 2017-06-02

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  • apa
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