Mammal Research

, Volume 53, Issue 4, pp 333–341

Optimal radio-tracking strategy — The best results with the least effort?

  • Kaarina Kauhala
  • Katja Holmala
Article

Abstract

We tested the need to radio-track nocturnal mammals, such as raccoon dogsNyctereutes procyonoides (Gray, 1834) and badgersMeles meles (Linnaeus, 1758), throughout the night for reliable estimates of home range size and habitat selection. We also tested the possibility to reduce the tracking effort by decreasing the number of tracking-nights. The results indicated that the locations collected before midnight gave good estimates of home range sizes but those collected after midnight or by reducing the number of tracking-nights resulted in smaller home ranges than those estimated using the total data. Thus, if one aims to estimate only the home range size, locations before midnight would be adequate. Locations of raccoon dogs taken only before or after midnight did not reveal all habitats, which were favoured on the basis of the total data. Although locations of badgers before midnight seemed to give correct results of habitat selection, we recommend radio-tracking also badgers at least few times through the night, because their core areas shifted during the night. In the case of badgers, but not of raccoon dogs, we obtained correct results of habitat selection by reducing the tracking effort by decreasing the number of tracking-nights.

Key words

Meles meles Nyctereutes procyonoides radio-tracking home range habitat selection 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Aebischer N. L., Robertson P. A. and Kenward R. E. 1993. Compositional analysis of habitat use from animal radio-tracking data. Ecology 74: 1313–1325.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Baghli A. and Verhagen R. 2004. Home ranges and movement patterns in a vulnerable polecatMustela putorius population. Acta Theriologica 49: 247–258.Google Scholar
  3. Börger L., Franconi N., De Michele G., Gantz A., Meschi F., Manica A., Lovari S. and Coulson T. 2006. Effects of sampling regime on the mean and variance of home range size estimates. Journal of Animal Ecology 75: 1393–1405.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Brøseth H., Knutsen B. and Bevanger K. 1997. Spatial organization and habitat utilization of badgersMeles meles: effects of food patch dispersion in the boreal forest of central Norway. Zeitschrift für Säugetierkunde 62: 17–22.Google Scholar
  5. Cresswell W. J. and Harris S. 1988. Foraging behaviour and home-range utilization in a suburban badger (Meles meles) population. Mammal Review 18: 37–9.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. de Solla S. R., Bonduriansky R. and Brooks R. J. 1999. Eliminating autocorrelation reduces biological relevance of home range estimates. Journal of Animal Ecology 68: 221–234.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Drygala F., Zoller H., Stier N., Mix H. and Roth M. 2008. Ranging and parental care of the raccoon dogNyctereutes procyonoides during pup rearing. Acta Theriologica 53: 111–119.Google Scholar
  8. Elmeros M., Madsen A. B. and Prang A. 2005. Home range of the badger (Meles meles) in a heterogenous landscape in Denmark. Lutra 48: 35–44.Google Scholar
  9. Hansteen T. L., Andreassen H. P. and Ims R. A. 1997. Effects of spatiotemporal scale on autocorrelation and home range estimators. The Journal of Wildlife Management 61: 280–290.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Harris S., Cresswell W. J., Forde P. G., Trewhella W. J., Woollard T. and Wray S. 1990. Home-range analysis using radio-tracking data: a review of problems and techniques particularly as applied to the study of mammals. Mammal Review 20: 97–123.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Jennrich R. I. and Turner F. B. 1969. Measurement of noncircular home range. Journal of Theoretical Biology 22: 227–237.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Johnson D. H. 1980. The comparison of usage and availability measurements for evaluating resource preference. Ecology 61: 65–71.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Kauhala K. 1996. Habitat use of raccoon dogs,Nyctereutes procyonoides, in southern Finland. Zeitschrift für Säugetierkunde 61: 269–275.Google Scholar
  14. Kauhala K., Helle E. and Taskinen K. 1993a. Home range of the raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides) in southern Finland. Journal of Zoology, London 231: 95–106.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Kauhala K., Hiltunen M. and Salonen T. 2005. Home ranges of mountain hares Lepus timidus in boreal forests of Finland. Wildlife Biology 11: 193–200.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Kauhala K., Holmala K., Lammers W. and Schregel J. 2006. Home ranges and densities of medium-sized carnivores in south-east Finland, with special reference to rabies spread. Acta Theriologica 51: 1–13.Google Scholar
  17. Kauhala K., Holmala K. and Schregel J. 2007. Seasonal activity patterns and movements of the raccoon dog, a vector a diseases and parasites, in southern Finland. Mammalian Biology 72: 342–353.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Kauhala K., Kaunisto M. and Helle E. 1993b. Diet of the raccoon dog,Nyctereutes procyonoides, in Finland. Zeitschrift für Säugetierkunde 58: 129–136.Google Scholar
  19. Kauhala K. and Tiilikainen T. 2002. Radio location error and the estimates of home-range size, movements, and habitat use: a simple field test. Annales Zoologici Fennici 39: 317–324.Google Scholar
  20. Kenward R. E., South A. B. and Walls S. S. 2003. Ranges6 v1.2: For the analysis of tracking and location data. Anatrack Ltd., Wareham, UK.Google Scholar
  21. Kowalczyk R., Jędrzejewska B. and Zalewski A. 2003a. Annual and circadian activity patterns of badgers (Meles meles) in Białowieża Primeval Forest (eastern Poland) compared with other Palearctic populations. Journal of Biogeography 30: 463–472.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Kowalczyk R., Zalewski A. and Jędrzejewska B. 2006. Daily movement and territory use by badgersMeles meles in Białowieża Primeval Forest, Poland. Wildlife Biology 12: 385–391.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Kowalczyk R, Zalewski A., Jędrzejewska B. and Jędrzejewski W. 2003b. Spatial organization and demography of badgers (Meles meles) in Białowie.za Primeval Forest, Poland, and the influence of earthworms on badger densities in Europe. Canadian Journal of Zoology 81: 74–87.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Kruuk H. 1978. Foraging and spatial organisation of the European badger,Meles meles L. Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology 4: 75–89.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Laundré J. W. and Keller B. L. 1984. Home-range size of coyotes: a critical review. The Journal of Wildlife Management 48: 127–139.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Laver P. N. and Kelly M. J. 2008. A critical review of home range studies. The Journal of Wildlife Management 72: 290–298.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Mustonen A-M., Asikainen J., Kauhala K., Paakkonen T. and Nieminen P. 2007. Seasonal rhythms of body temperature in the free-ranging raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides) with special emphasis on winter sleep. Chronobiology International 24: 1095–1107.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Novikov G. A. 1962. Carnivorous mammals of the fauna of the USSR. Israel Program for Scientific Translations, Jerusalem: 159–162.Google Scholar
  29. Okarma H., Jędrzejewski W., Schmidt K., Snieżko S., Bunevich A. N. and Jędrzejewska B. 1998. Home ranges of wolves in Białowie.za Primeval Forest, Poland, compared with other Eurasian populations. Journal of Mammalogy 79: 842–852.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Palphramand K. L., Newton-Cross G. and White P. C. L. 2007. Spatial organization and behaviour of badgers (Meles meles) in a moderate-density population. Behavioural Ecology and Sociobiology 61: 401–413.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Rosalino L. M., Macdonald D. W. and Santos-Reis M. 2004. Spatial structure and land-cover use in a low-density Mediterranean population of Eurasian badgers. Canadian Journal of Zoology 82: 1493–1502.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Rosalino L. M., Macdonald D. W. and Santos-Reis M. 2005. Activity rhythms, movements and patterns of sett use by badgers,Meles meles, in a Mediterranean woodland. Mammalia 69: 395–408.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Rosalino L. M., Santos M. J., Beier P. and Santos-Reis M. 2008. Eurasian badger habitat selection in Mediterranean environments: Does scale really matter? Mammalian Biology (2008), doi:10.1016/j.mambio.2007.02.004Google Scholar
  34. Seaman D. E., Millspaugh J. J., Kernohan B. J., Brundige G. C., Raedeke K. J. and Gitzen R. A. 1999. Effects of sample size on kernel home range estimates. The Journal of Wildlife Management 63: 739–747.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Smith G. J., Cary J. R. and Rongstad O. J. 1981. Sampling strategies for radio-tracking coyotes. Wildlife Society Bulletin 9: 88–93.Google Scholar
  36. Smith P. G. 2006. Compos analysis version 6.2. user’s guide. Version 6.2.3 Smith Ecology Ltd., 1 Bettws Cottage, Bettws, Abergavenny, NP7 7LG, UK. i + 22 pp. [WWW document]. URL http://www.smithecology.com/software.htmGoogle Scholar
  37. Wauters L. A., Preatoni D. G., Molinari A. and Tosi G. 2007. Radio-tracking squirrels: Performance of home range density and linkage estimators with small range and sample size. Ecological Modelling 202: 333–344.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Worton B. J. 1989. Kernel methods for estimating the utilisation distribution in home range studies. Ecology 70: 164–168.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Mammal Research Institute, Bialowieza, Poland 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kaarina Kauhala
    • 1
  • Katja Holmala
    • 2
  1. 1.Finnish Game and Fisheries Research InstituteTurkuFinland
  2. 2.VantaaFinland

Personalised recommendations