Seasonal habitat selection and foraging movements are important aspects of predator ecology, and individual movements can provide a method to link predator–prey dynamics to the spatial mosaic of the environment. Prairie Ridge State Natural Area in Jasper County, Illinois, is a highly fragmented reserve that provides critical habitat for many declining grassland-dependent birds. Nest predation in this area is likely to be substantial because of high mesopredator populations. We undertook a 2-year telemetry study to investigate raccoon (Procyon lotor) movements and habitat selection on the reserve. During the avian nesting season, raccoon pathways had significantly lower fractal dimension, indicating more linear movements and less searching behavior than for fall–winter pathways. Movement distances and rates did not differ between the sexes or seasons. Habitat selection was significantly different among seasons on 2 hierarchical levels. Raccoons generally avoided grasslands in spring and summer, and the shape of pathways indicated that raccoons apparently did not search for nests in grassland habitats. Consequently, nest predation likely occurred incidentally as raccoons moved across grasslands to richer food patches such as wetlands, streams, and residential areas.
You have requested a machine translation of selected content from our databases. This functionality is provided solely for your convenience and is in no way intended to replace human translation. Neither BioOne nor the owners and publishers of the content make, and they explicitly disclaim, any express or implied representations or warranties of any kind, including, without limitation, representations and warranties as to the functionality of the translation feature or the accuracy or completeness of the translations.
Translations are not retained in our system. Your use of this feature and the translations is subject to all use restrictions contained in the Terms and Conditions of Use of the BioOne website.