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Mammalian Biology

, Volume 67, Issue 1, pp 34–41 | Cite as

Abundance of the wood mouse Apodemus sylvaticus and the Algerian mouse Mus spretus (Rodentia, Muridae) in different habitats of Northern Algena

  • K. Khidas
  • Nora Khammes
  • Samia Khelloufi
  • S. Lek
  • S. Aulagnier
Original investigation

Abstract

The relationship between the abundance of two rodents, the wood mouse Apodemus sylvaticus and the Algerian mouse Mus spretus, and habitat characteristics were studied in Great Kabylia (Northern Algeria) at the end of the breeding season, when mice densities were at their highest level. Eleven habitat characteristics were recorded to describe 18 sampling sites. A linear multiple regression analysis revealed that the abundance of wood mice associated with rocks and stone blocks, and with low woody vegetation. Algerian mice were associated with a low cover of high woody vegetation, and with bare ground. Other habitat characteristics, such as modification of land by human activities, were also important and affected the abundance of these two species. These patterns are discussed in relation to the feeding habits and the anti-predatory behaviour of the species. The interspecific relationships of the two species are hypothesised.

Key words

Apodemus sylvaticus Mus spretus abundance modelling habitat selection North Africa 

Die Häufigkeit der Waldmaus Apodemus sylvatkus und der Algerischen Maus Mus spretus (Rodentia, Muridae) in verschiedenen Habitaten im Norden Algeriens

Zusammenfassung

Verschiedene Umweltfaktoren bestimmen die Häufigkeit von zwei Nagetieren, der Waldmaus Apodemus sytvaticus und der Algerischen Maus Mus spretus. Diese Faktoren wurden in 18 verschiedenen Zonen der Großen Kabylei (Nördliches Algerien) untersucht. Im Frühjahr, wurden Fallen in gerader Linie aufgestellt. Multivariate lineare Regressionen wurden ermittelt. Daraus ergeben sich besondere Beziehungen zwischen Bodendecke und Vorkommen dieser Nagetiere: Die Waldmaus ist stärker in steinigen, felsigen und auch mit Gestrüpp bedeckten Gebieten vertreten. Die algerische Maus ist dagegen besonders häufig in Gebieten, die arm an Gehölzen sind, und in solchen mit kahlem Boden. Durch menschliche Aktivitäten verursachte Störungen können den Bestand dieser Nagetiere ebenfalls stark beeinflussen. Die in dieser Studie aufgefundenen Beziehungen werden in Relation zu Freßgewohnheiten und Feindabwehrverhalten diskutiert.

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Copyright information

© Deutsche Gesellschaft für Säugetierkunde 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • K. Khidas
    • 1
  • Nora Khammes
    • 1
  • Samia Khelloufi
    • 1
  • S. Lek
    • 2
  • S. Aulagnier
    • 3
  1. 1.Laboratoire de Mammalogie, Departement de BiologieUniversité Mouloud MammeriTizi OuzouAlgeria
  2. 2.Centre d’Etude des Systemes Aquatiques ContinentauxUniversité Paul SabatierToulouse CedexFrance
  3. 3.Institut de Recherche sur les Grands MammifèresI.N.R.A.Castanet-Tolosan CedexFrance

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