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Evaluating habitat suitability and connectivity for a recolonizing large carnivore

Hemmingmoore, Heather and Aronsson, Malin and Åkesson, Mikael and Persson, Jens and Andren, Henrik (2020). Evaluating habitat suitability and connectivity for a recolonizing large carnivore. Biological Conservation. 242 , 108352 , 2-9
[Research article]

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The conservation of wide-ranging species presents challenges in a world of intensified human land use, forcing animals to occupy and recolonize human-modified landscapes. Although identifying suitable habitat and ensuring connectivity are important in supporting natural recolonization, these actions are rarely validated due to difficulties in monitoring such events. In Sweden, the Eurasian lynx (Lynx lynx) is now recolonizing its former range, after centuries of persecution. We investigated resource selection based on telemetry data from 108 lynx monitored over 20 years. We assessed the differences between the established population in central Sweden and the recolonizing population in southern Sweden, and between established and dispersing individuals. We found that models based on central Sweden successfully identified core habitat patches for establishment in southern Sweden, validated after recolonization. We also found that lynx selected for higher habitat suitability during the recolonization phase, and that dispersing individuals were less selective than established lynx. Using cost-distance analysis, we assessed connectivity between central and southern Sweden, and found that landscape permeability was higher when based on dispersing lynx compared to established lynx. Altogether, our findings suggest that when landscapes are sufficiently similar between source and recolonization areas, resource selection information from an established population can be useful for managers seeking to facilitate recolonization of wide-ranging species. We recommend more frequent use of validation during and after recolonization events, to improve our common understanding of habitat suitability and connectivity modeling, and therefore to enable more active management of recolonization events.

Authors/Creators:Hemmingmoore, Heather and Aronsson, Malin and Åkesson, Mikael and Persson, Jens and Andren, Henrik
Title:Evaluating habitat suitability and connectivity for a recolonizing large carnivore
Series Name/Journal:Biological Conservation
Year of publishing :2020
Article number:108352
Number of Pages:9
Publication Type:Research article
Article category:Scientific peer reviewed
Version:Published version
Copyright:Creative Commons: Attribution 4.0
Full Text Status:Public
Subjects:(A) Swedish standard research categories 2011 > 1 Natural sciences > 106 Biological Sciences (Medical to be 3 and Agricultural to be 4) > Ecology
Keywords:Lynx lynx-lynx, resource selection functions, home-range size, eurasian lynx, fragmented landscapes, patch connectivity, population-size, conservation, prey, dispersal
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Additional ID:
Type of IDID
Web of Science (WoS)000517855100008
ID Code:16936
Faculty:S - Faculty of Forest Sciences
Department:(NL, NJ) > Dept. of Ecology
(S) > Dept. of Ecology
Deposited By: SLUpub Connector
Deposited On:26 May 2020 12:58
Metadata Last Modified:15 Jan 2021 19:22

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