Scientists study home range factors

October 5, 2006

A team of European scientists says it has determined what factors affect the home range size among individuals of one species.

Instead of wandering aimlessly, most animals tend to stay in a certain area known as their home range.

Luca Borger of the University of Cambridge, Tim Coulson of Imperial College London and Novella Franconi of the University of Siena spent four years monitoring the movements of roe deer in southern Tuscany. They determined neighboring animals differ in the amount of area they use depending on the most abundant habitat type inside their home range.

They found the deer also respond to day length, with small home ranges in the summer and larger areas in autumn and winter.

"Yet, if it rains less or it is hotter than usual, the animals range over wider or smaller areas, depending on the habitat they are in," said Franconi.

"This is not only of scientific interest," added Coulson, "but is increasingly important to manage the effects of climate change and habitat alterations on animal populations."

The study appears in the journal The American Naturalist.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Over half of world's primates on brink of extinction: experts

Related Stories

Shrubs on warming North Slope attract moose, hares

November 11, 2015

Snowshoe hares and moose, which are both relative newcomers to Alaska's North Slope, may have become established in the area with the help of warming temperatures and thicker vegetation.

Recommended for you

CERN collides heavy nuclei at new record high energy

November 25, 2015

The world's most powerful accelerator, the 27 km long Large Hadron Collider (LHC) operating at CERN in Geneva established collisions between lead nuclei, this morning, at the highest energies ever. The LHC has been colliding ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.