, Volume 146, Issue 4, pp 632–640

Defining herbivore assemblages in the Kruger National Park: a correlative coherence approach

Community Ecology


Spatial associations of seven herbivore species in the Kruger National Park, South Africa, are analyzed using a new technique, Correlative Coherence Analysis (CoCA). CoCA is a generalization of the concept of correlation to more than two sequences of numbers. Prior information on the feeding ecology and metabolic requirements of these species is used to contrast spatial scales at which hypothesized guild aggregation or competition occurs. These hypotheses are tested using 13 years of aerial census data collected during the dry season. Our results are consistent with the hypothesis that distributions of large and small species of the same feeding type (i.e., grazers and browsers) overlap in potentially resource-rich areas, but have lower similarity values across all areas because the higher tolerance of large species for low quality foods results in a more even spatial distribution of large species compared to small species.

Key words

Correlative coherence analysis Herbivore communities Interspecific competition Guild aggregation South Africa 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Environmental Science, Policy and ManagementUniversity of CaliforniaBerkeleyUSA
  2. 2.Mammal Research Institute, Department of Zoology and EntomologyUniversity of PretoriaPretoriaSouth Africa
  3. 3.Museum of Vertebrate ZoologyUniversity of CaliforniaBerkeleyUSA
  4. 4.Southwest Fisheries Science CenterLa JollaUSA

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