Skip to Main Content
Due to a lapse in federal funding, this USDA website will not be actively updated. Once funding has been reestablished, online operations will continue.
Spatial and temporal interactions of elk, mule deer, and cattle.Author(s): Priscilla K. Coe; Bruce K. Johnson; Kelley M. Stewart; John G. Kie
Source: In: Transactions of the 69th North American Wildlife and Natural Resources Conference: 656-669
Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
PDF: View PDF (850 KB)
DescriptionElk (Cervus elaphus), mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) and cattle share millions of acres of public and private forests and rangelands across the western United States and Canada. These three species have important social, ecological and economic values. Understanding their interspecific interactions may clarify two recurring issues in their management: competition for food and competition for space, both may result in decreased animal fitness. Animal unit equivalents (AUEs) among these three species have been based on equivalent body mass (Society for Range Management 1989), whereby one cow is equivalent to two and one-half elk or to six mule deer. Hobbs and Carpenter (1986) argue that AUEs should be based on dietary overlap, and the argument can be extended to include spatial overlap. Consequently, the ecological impact of one species on the landscape may not be equivalent to another species. Furthermore, allocating forage becomes challenging if managers do not clearly understand the spatial and dietary overlap among these three species. Accurate predictions of ungulate distributions over time and space may help managers regulate densities and understand effects of specific ungulates on ecosystem processes.
- You may send email to email@example.com to request a hard copy of this publication.
- (Please specify exactly which publication you are requesting and your mailing address.)
- We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
- This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
CitationCoe, Priscilla K.; Johnson, Bruce K.; Stewart, Kelley M.; Kie, John G. 2004. Spatial and temporal interactions of elk, mule deer, and cattle. In: Transactions of the 69th North American Wildlife and Natural Resources Conference: 656-669
- Landscape simulation of foraging by elk, mule deer, and cattle on summer range.
- Elk, deer, and cattle: the Starkey Project.
- Diet composition, dry matter intake and diet overlap of mule deer, elk and cattle.
XML: View XML