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An Improved Radiocollar for Eastern Cottontail Rabbits

Bobby T. Bond, Jacob L. Bowman, Bruce D. Leopold, L. Wes Burger, Jr. and Christopher O. Kochanny
Wildlife Society Bulletin (1973-2006)
Vol. 28, No. 3 (Autumn, 2000), pp. 565-569
Published by: Wiley on behalf of the Wildlife Society
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3783604
Page Count: 5
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An Improved Radiocollar for Eastern Cottontail Rabbits
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Abstract

Premature loss of radiomarkers is a problem in many telemetry studies. We describe and report retention rates for 4 radiocollar designs used on eastern cottontail rabbits (Sylvilagus floridanus), January 1997 to January 1999, at Black Prairie Wildlife Management Area, Mississippi. These 4 designs are modifications of a collar developed by Advanced Telemetry Systems, Inc., and include a nylon collar with a single fastener (NSF), nylon collar with a double fastener (NDF), neoprene collar with a double fastener (NPDF), and modified neoprene collar with a double fastener (MNPDF). We estimated 90-day retention rates in a failure-time context to evaluate collar loss. Retention rate differed among collar designs (P<0.001) and was influenced by collar material (P<0.001) but not number of fasteners (P>0.05). Neoprene collars had greater 90-day retention rates (NPDF = 86.15%, MNPDF = 100.0%) than nylon collars (NSF = 29.4%, NDF = 25.5%). Reasons for collar loss were chewed, slipped, fastener pulled through collar, or collar-related mortality and injury. We recommend the MNPDF as the best design because of the high retention rate and well-positioned antenna.

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