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Space-use, diet, demographics, and topographic associations of lynx in the southern Canadian Rocky Mountains: A study [Chapter 12]

Posted date: March 26, 2016
Publication Year: 
2000
Authors: Apps, Clayton D.
Publication Series: 
General Technical Report (GTR)
Source: In: Ruggiero, Leonard F.; Aubry, Keith B.; Buskirk, Steven W.; Koehler, Gary M.; Krebs, Charles J.; McKelvey, Kevin S.; Squires, John R. Ecology and conservation of lynx in the United States. Gen. Tech. Rep. RMRS-GTR-30WWW. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. p. 351-372.
Note: This article is part of a larger document.

Abstract

Snowshoe hares are considered the primary prey of Canada lynx throughout their range. Relative to northern populations, hares occurring in mountainous regions at southern latitudes are thought to remain at low and stable densities through time. Hence, the ecology of associated southern lynx populations is expected to resemble that of northern populations during the low phase of the hare population cycle. The space use, diet, and demographics of lynx in the Rocky Mountains of southeastern British Columbia and southwestern Alberta are consistent with this hypothesis, based on data collected from 10 lynx, including six (three males, three females) resident adults, during two years of an assumed increase phase of a hare cycle. Mean hare densities were low, ranging from 0.01 to 0.47/ha among cover types and landscapes. Lynx winter diet (n = 137 kills) was diverse and included hares (52%), red squirrels (30%), northern flying squirrels (5%), grouse (3%), martens (3%), and voles (3%). Kitten recruitment to winter was zero among adult females for four lynx-years. Family groups that did occur in the study area during winter were associated with small litters of two. Survival among resident adults was 100%, but three of four subadults monitored during winter did not survive to mid-May. Home ranges were large, with annual 95% adaptive kernel utilization distributions averaging 381 and 239 km2 for resident males and females respectively. Minimum daily movements averaged 3.8 and 3.0 km respectively. Two juvenile dispersals were short (44 and 17 km) and ended in starvation.

Citation

Apps, Clayton D. 2000. Space-use, diet, demographics, and topographic associations of lynx in the southern Canadian Rocky Mountains: A study [Chapter 12]. In: Ruggiero, Leonard F.; Aubry, Keith B.; Buskirk, Steven W.; Koehler, Gary M.; Krebs, Charles J.; McKelvey, Kevin S.; Squires, John R. Ecology and conservation of lynx in the United States. Gen. Tech. Rep. RMRS-GTR-30WWW. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. p. 351-372.