, Volume 46, Issue 1, pp 69-78

Population ecology of free-ranging urban dogs in West Bengal, India

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Abstract

A population of urban free-ranging dogsCanis familiaris Linnaeus, 1758 was studied in Katwa, West Bengal, India. The analysis of changes in the density of the dog population over a period of 4 years revealed a considerable stability of this population. Mean (±SD)2 seasonal population density was 185±19 dogs/km2, ranging from 156 to 214 dogs/km2. A sex ratio of 1.37∶1 in favour of male was recorded in this study. High mortality (67%) occurred under the age of 4 months, and 82% mortality occurred within the age of 1 year. Among the adults, 24% mortality under the age of 2.6 year was recorded. Only a single breeding cycle and synchronization of breeding was observed. Immigration was observed as a crucial factor affecting the stability of this population.