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1 July 2005 A Den-centered Analysis of Swift Fox (Vulpes velox) Habitat Characteristics in Northeastern New Mexico
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Twenty-one swift fox (Vulpes velox) den sites were examined in northeastern New Mexico and compared to 50 random sites across public and private land, and to 50 random sites on public land only, to determine landscape level habitat characteristics in 1997–1998. Den sites were located by monitoring of radio-collared foxes and by systematic field surveys. We used Geographic Information System coverages to describe den site characteristics, including distances to nearest road, prairie dog town, residential structure and agricultural land; road density, residential density and percent agricultural land within 1 and 2 km of the den site or random site; and soil series, United States Department of Agriculture texture class, unified texture class, slope and elevational index at the den site or random site. Den sites had higher values than both types of random sites for road density within 1 km, road density within 2 km and elevation index; and lower values for distance to prairie dog town, residential density within 1 km and residential density within 2 km. Den sites were found more frequently in heavier-textured soils than would be expected if dens were distributed randomly with respect to soil texture. Furthermore, den sites were closer to prairie dog towns and residential structures than random sites on public land. Characteristics of swift fox den sites identified in this study might be helpful for large-scale habitat assessments and for development of conservation strategies.

KEITH M. KINTIGH and MARK C. ANDERSEN "A Den-centered Analysis of Swift Fox (Vulpes velox) Habitat Characteristics in Northeastern New Mexico," The American Midland Naturalist 154(1), 229-239, (1 July 2005).[0229:ADAOSF]2.0.CO;2
Accepted: 1 December 2004; Published: 1 July 2005
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