Skip to Main Content
Influence of primary prey on home-range size and habitat-use patterns of northern spotted owls (Strix occidentalis caurina)Author(s): Cynthia J. Zabel; Kevin S. McKelvey; James P. Ward
Source: Canadian Journal of Zoology. 73: 433-439.
Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
Station: Pacific Southwest Research Station
PDF: View PDF (132.09 KB)
DescriptionCorrelations between the home-range size of northern spotted owls (Strix occidentalis caurina) and proportion of their range in old-growth forest have been reported, but there are few data on the relationship between their home-range size and prey. The primary prey of spotted owls are wood rats and northern flying squirrels (Glaucomys sabrinus). Wood rats are larger and heavier than flying squirrels, and their population densities tend to be much greater than those of flying squirrels. We present data indicating that the home ranges of spotted owls are smaller where their diet consists predominantly of wood rats than where it consists predominantly of flying squirrels, and the proportion of the diet consisting of wood rats and flying squirrels explained significant variation in home-range size. We also found a significant correlation between home-range size and abundance of wood rats. These data indicate that prey species are a better predictor of home-range size than the proportion of older forest within spotted owl home ranges in the Klamath Province of northwestern California and southwestern Oregon, an area that is predominantly late-successional forest. Differences in habitat use were also related to prey species. Where spotted owls foraged for wood rats, the results indicated a preference for habitat edges, but where they utilized flying squirrels no such patterns were apparent.
- You may send email to firstname.lastname@example.org 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.
CitationZabel, Cynthia J.; McKelvey, Kevin S.; Ward, James P., Jr. 1995. Influence of primary prey on home-range size and habitat-use patterns of northern spotted owls (Strix occidentalis caurina). Canadian Journal of Zoology. 73: 433-439.
KeywordsStrix occidentalis caurina
- Food habits of the Northern Spotted Owl (Strix occidentalis caurina) at six nest sites in Washington?s east Cascades
- Diets and foraging behavior of northern spotted owls in Oregon.
- Northern spotted owls: influence of prey base and landscape character.
XML: View XML