Spatial segregation between Iberian lynx and other carnivores

Garrote, G.  Pérez de Ayala, R. 

DOI: https://doi.org/10.32800/abc.2019.42.0347

Abstract

The Iberian lynx (Lynx pardinus) is a specialist predator. Rabbits represent the bulk of its diet as for many other Iberian predators. This study addresses how the presence of the Iberian lynx affects the spatial distribution of the mesocarnivore community at landscape scale in the Sierra de Andújar. We studied mesocarnivore presence by sampling at 230 camera trapping stations, located in areas with and without lynx. We used a X2–test to compare the proportion of stations in which each species of carnivore were recorded in the zones with and without lynx. The proportion of camera trapping stations in which red fox (Vulpes vulpes), Egyptian mongoose (Herpestes ichneumon), beech marten (Martes foina), wildcat (Felis sylvestris) and common genet (Genetta genetta) were detected was significantly lower in the area where lynx were present than in the area where it was absent. No significant differences between the two types of areas were found for badgers (Meles meles). Our results highlight the role of the lynx as apex predators and the benefits that the recovery of Iberian lynx populations would entail in terms of trophic interactions and restored disrupted ecosystems processes.

Key words

Intraguild competition, Carnivores, Phototrapping, Apex predator,Competencia intragremial, Carnívoros, Fototrampeo, Depredador apical

Reception date: 08 XI 18  |   Acceptation date: 16 V 19  |   Publication date: 11 X 19

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