We studied seasonal movements of golden takin (Budorcas taxicolor bedfordi), a large, social, forest-dwelling ungulate, by radiotracking and field surveys during 1995–1996 and 2002–2005 at Foping National Nature Reserve on the southern slope of the Qinling Mountains, China. Takins inhabited forests and subalpine meadows at an altitudinal range from 1,360 m to 2,890 m. Our results showed that golden takins had a complicated seasonal movement pattern and underwent altitudinal migration 4 times each year. Takins occupied a high-altitude range during summer, stayed at low-altitude ranges for short periods during spring and autumn, and resided at an intermediate-altitude range during winter. Changes in plant phenology may have caused seasonal movements. Reserves for takin conservation should incorporate lower altitude habitats than those takins use in spring and autumn, and seasonal movements by takins should be protected from disturbance by human activities.
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Vol. 72 • No. 3