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1 December 2018 Rub-tree selection by Andean bears in the Peruvian dry forest
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Abstract

To advance our knowledge on the rubbing behavior of Andean bears (Tremarctos ornatus), we assessed characteristics of their rub-trees in the Peruvian tropical dry forest, where water is a rare and critical resource. We registered characteristics of rubbed and unrubbed trees and shrubs along bear trails in an area of approximately 100 km2 surrounding 7 waterholes in the western Andes foothills of Peru during austral summer 2014–2015. Analysis of 94 trees selected for rubbing (hereafter, rub-trees) and 253 available unmarked trees within a 5-m radius of each rub-tree showed that bears selected trees to rub that were relatively small and close to waterholes. Bears seemed to avoid the most common tree species, palo santo (Bursera graveolens), for tree-rubbing. We suggest that waterholes are important habitat features for Andean bears in the Peruvian dry forest, and that these sites be incorporated into conservation and land use management.

© 2018 International Association for Bear Research and Management
Jack D. Kleiner, Russell C. Van Horn, Jon E. Swenson, and Sam M.J.G. Steyaert "Rub-tree selection by Andean bears in the Peruvian dry forest," Ursus 29(1), (1 December 2018). https://doi.org/10.2192/URSUS-D-17-00012.1
Received: 9 May 2017; Accepted: 19 April 2018; Published: 1 December 2018
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