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Unveiling a wildlife haven: occupancy and activity patterns of mammals at a Tibetan sacred mountain

Unveiling a wildlife haven: occupancy and activity patterns of mammals at a Tibetan sacred mountain Here, we present a camera trap survey at a Tibetan sacred mountain to ascertain the status and activity patterns of medium- to large-sized ground-dwelling mammalian fauna. We recorded 15 medium- to large-sized mammal species including 9 carnivores, 4 ungulates, 1 primate, and 1 rodent. Six of the species were categorized by IUCN as globally threatened. The results suggested that the sacred mountain was particularly important for alpine ungulates. The mean occupancy probabilities of blue sheep Pseudois nayaur, Chinese goral Naemorhedus griseus, Chinese serow Capricornis milneedwardsii, and alpine musk deer Moschus chrysogaster were 0.93, 0.91, 0.87, and 0.44 respectively. Domestic dog Canis familiaris also occurs widely across the mountain, with a mean occupancy of 0.60. Temporal activity patterns showed that alpine musk deer were mostly nocturnal, with most captures occurring at night. Chinese serow were active at all periods, with an activity peak at dawn. Blue sheep were strictly diurnal, without any captures at night. Although Chinese goral were predominantly diurnal, captures also frequently occurred at night. Our study not only unveiled a wildlife haven benefiting from religious beliefs about sacred mountains but also pointed to the critical situation of the fauna in the sacred site. The fauna in such sacred sites are diverse but poorly studied, and are subject to threats from domestic dogs, garbage pollution, and population isolation. Future conservation and management efforts in such areas should evaluate the population genetic diversity and assess the impact of non-lethal human disturbance on the wildlife communities. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png European Journal of Wildlife Research Springer Journals

Unveiling a wildlife haven: occupancy and activity patterns of mammals at a Tibetan sacred mountain

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References (41)

Publisher
Springer Journals
Copyright
Copyright © 2018 by Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature
Subject
Life Sciences; Zoology; Ecology; Fish & Wildlife Biology & Management
ISSN
1612-4642
eISSN
1439-0574
DOI
10.1007/s10344-018-1213-y
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Here, we present a camera trap survey at a Tibetan sacred mountain to ascertain the status and activity patterns of medium- to large-sized ground-dwelling mammalian fauna. We recorded 15 medium- to large-sized mammal species including 9 carnivores, 4 ungulates, 1 primate, and 1 rodent. Six of the species were categorized by IUCN as globally threatened. The results suggested that the sacred mountain was particularly important for alpine ungulates. The mean occupancy probabilities of blue sheep Pseudois nayaur, Chinese goral Naemorhedus griseus, Chinese serow Capricornis milneedwardsii, and alpine musk deer Moschus chrysogaster were 0.93, 0.91, 0.87, and 0.44 respectively. Domestic dog Canis familiaris also occurs widely across the mountain, with a mean occupancy of 0.60. Temporal activity patterns showed that alpine musk deer were mostly nocturnal, with most captures occurring at night. Chinese serow were active at all periods, with an activity peak at dawn. Blue sheep were strictly diurnal, without any captures at night. Although Chinese goral were predominantly diurnal, captures also frequently occurred at night. Our study not only unveiled a wildlife haven benefiting from religious beliefs about sacred mountains but also pointed to the critical situation of the fauna in the sacred site. The fauna in such sacred sites are diverse but poorly studied, and are subject to threats from domestic dogs, garbage pollution, and population isolation. Future conservation and management efforts in such areas should evaluate the population genetic diversity and assess the impact of non-lethal human disturbance on the wildlife communities.

Journal

European Journal of Wildlife ResearchSpringer Journals

Published: Aug 15, 2018

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