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Hopping Down the Main Street: Eastern Grey Kangaroos at Home in an Urban Matrix.

Coulson G, Cripps JK, Wilson ME - Animals (Basel) (2014)

Bottom Line: Vehicles were the major (47%) cause of mortality of tagged adults.Road-kills were concentrated (74%) in autumn and winter, and were heavily male biased: half of all tagged males died on roads compared with only 20% of tagged females.We predict that this novel and potent mortality factor will have profound, long-term impacts on the demography and behavior of the urban kangaroo population at Anglesea.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Zoology, The University of Melbourne, Parkville, VIC 3010, Australia. gcoulson@unimelb.edu.au.

ABSTRACT
Most urban mammals are small. However, one of the largest marsupials, the Eastern Grey Kangaroo Macropus giganteus, occurs in some urban areas. In 2007, we embarked on a longitudinal study of this species in the seaside town of Anglesea in southern Victoria, Australia. We have captured and tagged 360 individuals to date, fitting each adult with a collar displaying its name. We have monitored survival, reproduction and movements by resighting, recapture and radio-tracking, augmented by citizen science reports of collared individuals. Kangaroos occurred throughout the town, but the golf course formed the nucleus of this urban population. The course supported a high density of kangaroos (2-5/ha), and approximately half of them were tagged. Total counts of kangaroos on the golf course were highest in summer, at the peak of the mating season, and lowest in winter, when many males but not females left the course. Almost all tagged adult females were sedentary, using only part of the golf course and adjacent native vegetation and residential blocks. In contrast, during the non-mating season (autumn and winter), many tagged adult males ranged widely across the town in a mix of native vegetation remnants, recreation reserves, vacant blocks, commercial properties and residential gardens. Annual fecundity of tagged females was generally high (≥70%), but survival of tagged juveniles was low (54%). We could not determine the cause of death of most juveniles. Vehicles were the major (47%) cause of mortality of tagged adults. Road-kills were concentrated (74%) in autumn and winter, and were heavily male biased: half of all tagged males died on roads compared with only 20% of tagged females. We predict that this novel and potent mortality factor will have profound, long-term impacts on the demography and behavior of the urban kangaroo population at Anglesea.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Two tagged and collared male Eastern Grey Kangaroos Macropus giganteus (Otis and Pete) at the Anglesea Lookout Flora Reserve above the Great Ocean Road, about 1 km south of where they were collared and tagged at the Anglesea Golf Club.
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animals-04-00272-f005: Two tagged and collared male Eastern Grey Kangaroos Macropus giganteus (Otis and Pete) at the Anglesea Lookout Flora Reserve above the Great Ocean Road, about 1 km south of where they were collared and tagged at the Anglesea Golf Club.

Mentions: Tagged kangaroos moved between the golf course and Camp Wilkin. Of the ten individuals first captured at Camp Wilkin, we resighted five (all female) only at the camp, but saw the others (three male, two female) on the golf course on occasions. Another seven individuals (four male, two female) that had first been captured on the golf course were seen at Camp Wilkin. We also received citizen science reports of tagged kangaroos, primarily males, throughout the town, and augmented these with our own observations (Figure 5). In addition, we located radio-collared males in many parts of the town, and radio-tracking one individual often led us to other tagged males nearby. These movements off the golf course and into the town matrix occurred mainly in autumn and winter. Males sometimes also left the golf course in summer. For example, one large male (Stan) was reported resting during the day and drinking from a pond in a shady backyard on hot (>40 °C) days in two consecutive summers. However, we had insufficient locations of tagged individuals for quantitative analyses of habitat use. At a qualitative level, kangaroos occurred in a wide range of habitats beyond the golf course and school camp: bush reserves, public playgrounds, holiday parks, vacant blocks, commercial properties and residential gardens. We also located some kangaroos in native vegetation of the Anglesea Heath on the fringe of the town.


Hopping Down the Main Street: Eastern Grey Kangaroos at Home in an Urban Matrix.

Coulson G, Cripps JK, Wilson ME - Animals (Basel) (2014)

Two tagged and collared male Eastern Grey Kangaroos Macropus giganteus (Otis and Pete) at the Anglesea Lookout Flora Reserve above the Great Ocean Road, about 1 km south of where they were collared and tagged at the Anglesea Golf Club.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4494371&req=5

animals-04-00272-f005: Two tagged and collared male Eastern Grey Kangaroos Macropus giganteus (Otis and Pete) at the Anglesea Lookout Flora Reserve above the Great Ocean Road, about 1 km south of where they were collared and tagged at the Anglesea Golf Club.
Mentions: Tagged kangaroos moved between the golf course and Camp Wilkin. Of the ten individuals first captured at Camp Wilkin, we resighted five (all female) only at the camp, but saw the others (three male, two female) on the golf course on occasions. Another seven individuals (four male, two female) that had first been captured on the golf course were seen at Camp Wilkin. We also received citizen science reports of tagged kangaroos, primarily males, throughout the town, and augmented these with our own observations (Figure 5). In addition, we located radio-collared males in many parts of the town, and radio-tracking one individual often led us to other tagged males nearby. These movements off the golf course and into the town matrix occurred mainly in autumn and winter. Males sometimes also left the golf course in summer. For example, one large male (Stan) was reported resting during the day and drinking from a pond in a shady backyard on hot (>40 °C) days in two consecutive summers. However, we had insufficient locations of tagged individuals for quantitative analyses of habitat use. At a qualitative level, kangaroos occurred in a wide range of habitats beyond the golf course and school camp: bush reserves, public playgrounds, holiday parks, vacant blocks, commercial properties and residential gardens. We also located some kangaroos in native vegetation of the Anglesea Heath on the fringe of the town.

Bottom Line: Vehicles were the major (47%) cause of mortality of tagged adults.Road-kills were concentrated (74%) in autumn and winter, and were heavily male biased: half of all tagged males died on roads compared with only 20% of tagged females.We predict that this novel and potent mortality factor will have profound, long-term impacts on the demography and behavior of the urban kangaroo population at Anglesea.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Zoology, The University of Melbourne, Parkville, VIC 3010, Australia. gcoulson@unimelb.edu.au.

ABSTRACT
Most urban mammals are small. However, one of the largest marsupials, the Eastern Grey Kangaroo Macropus giganteus, occurs in some urban areas. In 2007, we embarked on a longitudinal study of this species in the seaside town of Anglesea in southern Victoria, Australia. We have captured and tagged 360 individuals to date, fitting each adult with a collar displaying its name. We have monitored survival, reproduction and movements by resighting, recapture and radio-tracking, augmented by citizen science reports of collared individuals. Kangaroos occurred throughout the town, but the golf course formed the nucleus of this urban population. The course supported a high density of kangaroos (2-5/ha), and approximately half of them were tagged. Total counts of kangaroos on the golf course were highest in summer, at the peak of the mating season, and lowest in winter, when many males but not females left the course. Almost all tagged adult females were sedentary, using only part of the golf course and adjacent native vegetation and residential blocks. In contrast, during the non-mating season (autumn and winter), many tagged adult males ranged widely across the town in a mix of native vegetation remnants, recreation reserves, vacant blocks, commercial properties and residential gardens. Annual fecundity of tagged females was generally high (≥70%), but survival of tagged juveniles was low (54%). We could not determine the cause of death of most juveniles. Vehicles were the major (47%) cause of mortality of tagged adults. Road-kills were concentrated (74%) in autumn and winter, and were heavily male biased: half of all tagged males died on roads compared with only 20% of tagged females. We predict that this novel and potent mortality factor will have profound, long-term impacts on the demography and behavior of the urban kangaroo population at Anglesea.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus