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1 April 2010 Spatial Ecology, Survival and Cause-Specific Mortality of Gray Foxes (Urocyon cinereoargenteus) in a Longleaf Pine Ecosystem
Danielle L. Temple, Michael J. Chamberlain, L. Mike Conner
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Abstract

Gray fox ecology is poorly understood within the longleaf pine ecosystem, despite the importance of these landscapes to conservation and biological diversity. During 2002–2006, we radio-monitored 42 gray foxes and estimated space use, habitat selection and survival within a managed longleaf pine forest. Sizes of home ranges and core areas were greater in winter than during other seasons, but were similar between males and females. Industrial agriculture field and residential areas were important to foxes when selecting home ranges, but hardwood forest stands were selected when establishing core areas and were consistently used more than other habitats. Despite being captured within the longleaf pine community, most foxes either consistently were found outside of this system in other habitats, or used habitats along the periphery of the longleaf pine system. Mean annual survival was 0.61, and human-induced factors (vehicle collisions and trapping) accounted for most (63%) fox mortalities. Longleaf pine forests did not appear to be important to gray foxes in this study, which is significant because natural ecosystems are often important for predator species. We provide evidence that sources of gray fox mortality are influenced by habitat selection patterns.

Danielle L. Temple, Michael J. Chamberlain, and L. Mike Conner "Spatial Ecology, Survival and Cause-Specific Mortality of Gray Foxes (Urocyon cinereoargenteus) in a Longleaf Pine Ecosystem," The American Midland Naturalist 163(2), 413-422, (1 April 2010). https://doi.org/10.1674/0003-0031-163.2.413
Received: 30 April 2009; Accepted: 1 August 2009; Published: 1 April 2010
JOURNAL ARTICLE
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