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Alternate Metrics of Animal Resource Selection Provide Opposing Inference

Serrouya R, Kellner A, Pavan G, Lewis DW , DeMars CA & McLellan BN VIEW

Understanding how valued species interact with their environment is necessary for wise conservation action, but quantifying habitat use can be difficult. This study evaluated habitat selection of endangered mountain caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou) using two common methods; snow tracking and resource selection analyses using Global Positioning System (GPS) locations. The two methods often provided the same results, however snow tracking showed selection for forestry roads, whereas selection analyses with GPS locations suggested avoidance of roads. These results highlight a potential bias against detecting selection for habitat features used for movement when using long-interval GPS data, cautioning research to carefully examine their study designs when asking these types of questions.

DOCUMENT TYPE: Peer-reviewed Publications, Applied Research Reports

SUBJECT AREA: monitoring

TAGS: edge effect, Global Positioning System, linear features, movement, caribou

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