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Space Use and Habitat Selection by Resident and Transient Coyotes (Canis latrans).

Hinton JW, van Manen FT, Chamberlain MJ - PLoS ONE (2015)

Bottom Line: Resident and transient coyotes demonstrated similar habitat selection, notably selection of agricultural over forested habitats.However, transients exhibited stronger selection for roads than resident coyotes.Although transient coyotes are less likely to contribute reproductively to their population, transiency may be an important life history trait that facilitates metapopulation dynamics through dispersal and the eventual replacement of breeding residents lost to mortality.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, United States of America.

ABSTRACT
Little information exists on coyote (Canis latrans) space use and habitat selection in the southeastern United States and most studies conducted in the Southeast have been carried out within small study areas (e.g., ≤1,000 km2). Therefore, studying the placement, size, and habitat composition of coyote home ranges over broad geographic areas could provide relevant insights regarding how coyote populations adjust to regionally varying ecological conditions. Despite an increasing number of studies of coyote ecology, few studies have assessed the role of transiency as a life-history strategy among coyotes. During 2009-2011, we used GPS radio-telemetry to study coyote space use and habitat selection on the Albemarle Peninsula of northeastern North Carolina. We quantified space use and 2nd- and 3rd-order habitat selection for resident and transient coyotes to describe space use patterns in a predominantly agricultural landscape. The upper limit of coyote home-range size was approximately 47 km2 and coyotes exhibiting shifting patterns of space use of areas >65 km2 were transients. Transients exhibited localized space use patterns for short durations prior to establishing home ranges, which we defined as "biding" areas. Resident and transient coyotes demonstrated similar habitat selection, notably selection of agricultural over forested habitats. However, transients exhibited stronger selection for roads than resident coyotes. Although transient coyotes are less likely to contribute reproductively to their population, transiency may be an important life history trait that facilitates metapopulation dynamics through dispersal and the eventual replacement of breeding residents lost to mortality.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Map of the Albemarle Peninsula of northeastern North Carolina with primary habitat types during 2009–2011.
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pone.0132203.g001: Map of the Albemarle Peninsula of northeastern North Carolina with primary habitat types during 2009–2011.

Mentions: Our study was conducted on the Albemarle Peninsula in the northeastern region of North Carolina (Fig 1). The study area included approximately 6,000 km2 of federal, state, and private lands comprising a row-crop agricultural-bottomland forest matrix with little change in elevation (<50 m). Agricultural crops (i.e., corn, cotton, soybean, and winter wheat) and managed pine (Pinus spp.) composed of approximately 30% and 15% of the land cover, respectively. Other prominent land-cover types were coastal bottomland forests and pocosin (peatlands with a low [1–4 m] and dense evergreen shrub layer; 35%), herbaceous wetlands and saltwater marshes (5%), open water (5%), and other minor land-cover types (10%). The climate was typical of the mid-Atlantic: 4 distinct seasons, nearly equal in length, with an annual precipitation averaging between 122 to 132 cm. Summer climate was typically hot and humid with daily temperatures ranging from 27°C to over 38°C and winters were relatively cool with daily temperatures ranging between -4° to 7° C.


Space Use and Habitat Selection by Resident and Transient Coyotes (Canis latrans).

Hinton JW, van Manen FT, Chamberlain MJ - PLoS ONE (2015)

Map of the Albemarle Peninsula of northeastern North Carolina with primary habitat types during 2009–2011.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4493083&req=5

pone.0132203.g001: Map of the Albemarle Peninsula of northeastern North Carolina with primary habitat types during 2009–2011.
Mentions: Our study was conducted on the Albemarle Peninsula in the northeastern region of North Carolina (Fig 1). The study area included approximately 6,000 km2 of federal, state, and private lands comprising a row-crop agricultural-bottomland forest matrix with little change in elevation (<50 m). Agricultural crops (i.e., corn, cotton, soybean, and winter wheat) and managed pine (Pinus spp.) composed of approximately 30% and 15% of the land cover, respectively. Other prominent land-cover types were coastal bottomland forests and pocosin (peatlands with a low [1–4 m] and dense evergreen shrub layer; 35%), herbaceous wetlands and saltwater marshes (5%), open water (5%), and other minor land-cover types (10%). The climate was typical of the mid-Atlantic: 4 distinct seasons, nearly equal in length, with an annual precipitation averaging between 122 to 132 cm. Summer climate was typically hot and humid with daily temperatures ranging from 27°C to over 38°C and winters were relatively cool with daily temperatures ranging between -4° to 7° C.

Bottom Line: Resident and transient coyotes demonstrated similar habitat selection, notably selection of agricultural over forested habitats.However, transients exhibited stronger selection for roads than resident coyotes.Although transient coyotes are less likely to contribute reproductively to their population, transiency may be an important life history trait that facilitates metapopulation dynamics through dispersal and the eventual replacement of breeding residents lost to mortality.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, United States of America.

ABSTRACT
Little information exists on coyote (Canis latrans) space use and habitat selection in the southeastern United States and most studies conducted in the Southeast have been carried out within small study areas (e.g., ≤1,000 km2). Therefore, studying the placement, size, and habitat composition of coyote home ranges over broad geographic areas could provide relevant insights regarding how coyote populations adjust to regionally varying ecological conditions. Despite an increasing number of studies of coyote ecology, few studies have assessed the role of transiency as a life-history strategy among coyotes. During 2009-2011, we used GPS radio-telemetry to study coyote space use and habitat selection on the Albemarle Peninsula of northeastern North Carolina. We quantified space use and 2nd- and 3rd-order habitat selection for resident and transient coyotes to describe space use patterns in a predominantly agricultural landscape. The upper limit of coyote home-range size was approximately 47 km2 and coyotes exhibiting shifting patterns of space use of areas >65 km2 were transients. Transients exhibited localized space use patterns for short durations prior to establishing home ranges, which we defined as "biding" areas. Resident and transient coyotes demonstrated similar habitat selection, notably selection of agricultural over forested habitats. However, transients exhibited stronger selection for roads than resident coyotes. Although transient coyotes are less likely to contribute reproductively to their population, transiency may be an important life history trait that facilitates metapopulation dynamics through dispersal and the eventual replacement of breeding residents lost to mortality.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus