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Human-modified habitats facilitate forest-dwelling populations of an invasive predator, Vulpes vulpes

Hradsky, Bronwyn A., Robley, Alan, Alexander, Ray, Ritchie, Euan G, York, Alan and Di Stefano, Julian 2017, Human-modified habitats facilitate forest-dwelling populations of an invasive predator, Vulpes vulpes, Scientific Reports, vol. 7, no. 1, pp. 1-12, doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-12464-7.

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Title Human-modified habitats facilitate forest-dwelling populations of an invasive predator, Vulpes vulpes
Formatted title Human-modified habitats facilitate forest-dwelling populations of an invasive predator, Vulpes vulpes
Author(s) Hradsky, Bronwyn A.
Robley, Alan
Alexander, Ray
Ritchie, Euan GORCID iD for Ritchie, Euan G orcid.org/0000-0003-4410-8868
York, Alan
Di Stefano, Julian
Journal name Scientific Reports
Volume number 7
Issue number 1
Article ID 12291
Start page 1
End page 12
Total pages 12
Publisher Nature Publishing Group
Place of publication London, Eng.
Publication date 2017-09-25
ISSN 2045-2322
2045-2322
Keyword(s) Science & Technology
Multidisciplinary Sciences
Science & Technology - Other Topics
RED FOX
HOME-RANGE
INDIVIDUAL SPECIALIZATION
MESOPREDATOR RELEASE
SELECTION FUNCTIONS
RESOURCE SELECTION
FERAL PREDATORS
ANIMAL MOVEMENT
SITE SELECTION
NATIONAL-PARK
Summary Invasive and over-abundant predators pose a major threat to biodiversity and often benefit from human activities. Effective management requires understanding predator use of human-modified habitats (including resource subsidies and disturbed environments), and individual variation within populations. We investigated selection for human-modified habitats by invasive red foxes, Vulpes vulpes, within two predominantly forested Australian landscapes. We predicted that foxes would select for human-modified habitats in their range locations and fine-scale movements, but that selection would vary between individuals. We GPS-tracked 19 foxes for 17-166 days; ranges covered 33 to >2500 ha. Approximately half the foxes selected for human-modified habitats at the range scale, with some 'commuting' more than five kilometres to farmland or townships at night. Two foxes used burnt forest intensively after a prescribed fire. In their fine-scale nocturnal movements, most foxes selected for human-modified habitats such as reservoirs, forest edges and roads, but there was considerable individual variation. Native fauna in fragmented and disturbed habitats are likely to be exposed to high rates of fox predation, and anthropogenic food resources may subsidise fox populations within the forest interior. Coordinating fox control across land-tenures, targeting specific landscape features, and limiting fox access to anthropogenic resources will be important for biodiversity conservation.
Language eng
DOI 10.1038/s41598-017-12464-7
Field of Research 050202 Conservation and Biodiversity
050205 Environmental Management
060899 Zoology not elsewhere classified
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2017, The Authors
Free to Read? Yes
Use Rights Creative Commons Attribution licence
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30103945

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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.