ESTIMATING HOME RANGES USING DIFFERENT CURRENCIES AND ANIMALS' PERCEPTION ABOUT THEIR ENVIRONMENTS.
Roger A. Powell; Department Applied Ecology, North Carolina State University; Campus Box 7617, Raleigh, NC, 27695-7617; (218) 235-8808; newf@ncsu.edu; Shannon Barber-Meyer, Christopher S. DePerno, Aaron N. Facka, Thomas Gable, Nocholas P. Gould, Susan A. Mansfield, L. David Mech, Lynn L. Rogers, Stephen Windels
Most researchers estimate home ranges using telemetry location estimates. With an appropriate estimator, this approach produces utilization distributions that approximate probability distributions for where animals spend time. Today, essentially all home ranges estimated use time as their currency. Estimating home ranges using energy expenditure and importance of resources provides different insights into why animals use space as they do. Weighting each telemetry location by rate of energy expenditure at that time produces a new utilization distribution. For some animals, energy expenditure in their home range cores is higher, and in the home range peripheries lower, than time spent in those areas. Home range estimators have parameters that must be chosen to be appropriate to the biology of study animals and research technology. Choosing those parameters based on perceptual distances for sight, sound, smell and memory produce different utilization distribution yet, explaining different aspects of why animals use space as they do. We present data for fishers (Pekania pennanti), black bears (Ursus americanus) and wolves (Canis lupus) to illustrate how using different currencies and perceptual distances affect utilization distributions, home range overlap, and home range cores.
Wildlife Techniques and Technologies