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Influence of spatial variation in forage availability and predation risk on habitat selection by woodland caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou) in Ontario

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dc.contributor.advisor Fryxell, John
dc.contributor.author McGreer, Madeleine
dc.date.accessioned 2014-10-06T20:40:22Z
dc.date.available 2014-10-06T20:40:22Z
dc.date.copyright 2014-10
dc.date.created 2014-10-01
dc.date.issued 2014-10-06
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10214/8513
dc.description.abstract Little is currently known about how selection for particular habitats relates to fitness constraints, nor how the strength of selection for specific fitness metrics changes due to variation in habitat availability across broad landscape gradients. I examine site selection by 110 woodland caribou equipped with GPS radio-collars with respect to two fitness-related metrics, forage availability and predation risk, across a broad spatial gradient of forage and risk availability. I found that caribou select habitats that reduce predation risk and improve access to forage. By comparing within-population variation in forage availability and risk prevalence, I found that caribou face a forage-risk trade-off in summer but not winter. Caribou decreased selection strength for forage with forage availability in winter, but not summer. In contrast, caribou in both seasons increased risk avoidance in riskier ranges. These findings suggest that trade-offs other than food versus safety influence caribou habitat use decisions. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship This work was conducted as part of a large multi-agency research program with funding provided by the Forest Ecosystem Science Co-operative Inc., NSERC CRD program, Canadian Forest Service, and the Wildlife Research and Development Division and the Center for Northern Forest Ecosystem Research of the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.rights Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 Canada *
dc.rights.uri http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.5/ca/ *
dc.subject forage en_US
dc.subject habitat selection en_US
dc.subject predation en_US
dc.subject Rangifer tarandus caribou en_US
dc.subject scale en_US
dc.subject step selection function en_US
dc.title Influence of spatial variation in forage availability and predation risk on habitat selection by woodland caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou) in Ontario en_US
dc.type Thesis en_US
dc.degree.programme Integrative Biology en_US
dc.degree.name Master of Science en_US
dc.degree.department Department of Integrative Biology en_US


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Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 Canada Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 Canada