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Ecology of the European Wild Rabbit Oryctolagus cuniculus (L.) in Mediterranean Habitats. II. Distribution in the Landscape of the Camargue, S. France

P. M. Rogers
Journal of Applied Ecology
Vol. 18, No. 2 (Aug., 1981), pp. 355-371
DOI: 10.2307/2402400
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2402400
Page Count: 17
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Ecology of the European Wild Rabbit Oryctolagus cuniculus (L.) in Mediterranean Habitats. II. Distribution in the Landscape of the Camargue, S. France
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Abstract

(1) Distribution of the European wild rabbit, Oryctolagus cuniculus (L.) on a 1000 ha west Mediterranean site (Tour du Valat, Rhone delta, S. France) was compared with an objective ecological classification of landscape. The study area has flat topography, and consists of marshlands, saline alluvial soils and generally halophytic vegetation with perennial grasses on higher ground. (2) Rabbit distribution between nightfall and midnight and distribution of faecal pellets indicated that rabbits fed extensively on ground slightly lower than but adjacent to warrens and vegetated by halophytes, annual grasses and forbs. Warrens were associated with levees and ground which had been artificially raised or drained. Parcels of land suitable for warrens were small and infrequent in the west half of the study area, where rabbits were rare. Rabbits were abundant only where suitable juxtaposition of habitat for warren building and for feeding occurred. (3) In the landscape classification hierarchy, the scale at which rabbits are related to the environment (Umwelt) is at the level of land facets rather than land systems.

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