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Habitat Use and Ecological Correlates of Home Range Size in a Small Cervid: The Roe Deer
Jarle Tufto, Reidar Andersen and John Linnell
Journal of Animal Ecology
Vol. 65, No. 6 (Nov., 1996), pp. 715-724
Published by: British Ecological Society
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/5670
Page Count: 10
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1. Summer home range size variation and habitat selection of 35 radio-collared adult female roe deer was studied, using kernel home range estimation and compositional analysis of habitat use. 2. Female roe deer adjust the size of their home range in response to decreasing food supply, and the hypothesis that female roe deer utilize the minimum area that sustain their energy requirement cannot be rejected. 3. Home range size increased with the visibility in the home range (the average distance at which sight is blocked by intervening vegetation). This supports the hypothesis that cover is important in reducing the risk of predation and thereby increasing adult survival. 4. Female roe deer spend more time near habitat edges, supporting the hypothesis that different habitat types contain complementary resources, e.g. food and cover or different nutrients. Simultaneous access to several habitat types did not have any effect on home range size, possibly because variation in heterogeneity between different home ranges was too low. 5. Females without fawns had smaller home ranges, possibly because they only need to sustain their own energetic requirements. 6. The analyses of habitat selection inside each home range showed that the forest types, characterized by high densities of food and low visibility, were preferred, suggesting that habitat use is allocated in proportion to either food or cover or both.
Journal of Animal Ecology © 1996 British Ecological Society