Mammal Research

, Volume 61, Issue 4, pp 319–326 | Cite as

Seasonal spatial behaviour of pine marten Martes martes in a deciduous oak forest of central Italy

  • Paola Bartolommei
  • Emiliano Manzo
  • Roberto Cozzolino
Original Paper


Size and characteristics of home range are fundamental ecological parameters for a species and useful life-history variables for predicting the number of individuals that can occupy a certain area. In Italy, wildlife biologists have largely ignored spatial behaviour of the European pine marten, although this predator is present across the peninsula. We investigated the seasonal socio-spatial behaviour of pine marten in a sub-Mediterranean deciduous oak forest of central Italy, by radio-tracking 16 pine martens (eight males and eight females). To our knowledge, our research is the only published study on spacing pattern of pine marten in sub-Mediterranean deciduous oak forests and the first published radio-telemetry study on pine marten home range in Italy. Size, composition and stability of seasonal ranges (FK 95 and 50 %) were analyzed in both sexes. Unlike what has been reported in literature for other European habitats, home ranges resulted similar in size and forest coverage in both sexes and throughout seasons. The only exception were females’ territories whose size decreased in spring. Males and females occupied ranges stable in both position and size through the year, leading us to hypothesize that the sub-Mediterranean deciduous oak forest was able to meet resource requirements for both sexes and in all seasons. Our results provide useful information on the socio-spatial ecology of the European pine marten and may be helpful for conservation management of this species in southern Europe.


European pine marten Spacing patterns Socio-spatial ecology Home range Fidelity Socio-spatial organization 



We would like to thank Silvia Cafariello, Ilaria Campana, Sara Del Fante, Melissa Messinese and Carlo Nardi for help during fieldwork. We are grateful to Andrea Bonacchi and Stefania Gasperini for their useful comments and Ludovica Cervi for language revision.


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Copyright information

© Mammal Research Institute, Polish Academy of Sciences, Białowieża, Poland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paola Bartolommei
    • 1
  • Emiliano Manzo
    • 1
  • Roberto Cozzolino
    • 1
  1. 1.Fondazione Ethoikos, Convento dell’OsservanzaRadicondoliItaly

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