THE EFFECTS OF HUMAN DISTURBANCE AND DROUGHT ON INTRAGUILD INTERACTIONS OF MAMMALIAN MESOPREDATORS IN CALIFORNIA.
Molly K. Parren; Humboldt State University ; 1 Harpst St, Arcata, CA, 95521; (802) 233-3396; Molly.Parren@humboldt.edu;
In 2014 California was declared to be in a Drought State of Emergency. This pronouncement resulted in the creation of the Terrestrial Species Stressor Monitoring (TSM) Program implemented by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife to establish baseline data on terrestrial vertebrates in the Mojave Desert and Central Valley of California. Between 2016 and 2017, 589 camera traps were deployed throughout these two eco-regions documenting mammalian mesopredator presence in a drought year (2016) and a post-drought year (2017). Sites were distributed across a variety of land cover types with varying levels of human disturbance, providing the opportunity to examine how human disturbance, combined with drought, might be influencing mesopredator species. The objectives of this study were to examine spatial patterns of mesopredator co-occurrence at a large spatial scale across varying levels of human disturbance, and to investigate how drought might mediate co-occurrence. We expected to find higher levels of co-occurrence in areas of increased human disturbance, especially in 2016 when drought conditions may have attracted mesopredators to anthropogenic water sources.
Poster Session   Student Paper