Navigation Links
Scat sniffing dogs detecting rare California carnivores
Date:12/11/2007

BERKELEY, Calif.Scientists at the U.S. Forest Service Redwood Sciences Lab and University of Vermont found scat sniffing dogs might be the best way to confirm the presence of rare carnivores in forested areas like the Southern Sierra Nevada Mountains.

In 2003 and 2004, they compared the ability of dogs, remote cameras and hair snares to detect fishers, bobcats and black bears at 168 sites throughout Vermont. Dogs had the highest detection rate for targeted species and were the most cost-effective, according to findings published last summer in The Journal of Wildlife Management.

U.S. Forest Service scientists with the Pacific Southwest Research Station used detection dog teams from the University of Washingtons Center for Conservation Biology last summer to study a Pacific fisher population in the Sierra National Forest. The study will help determine how efforts to reduce wildland fire risks there might affect the animal.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has ruled the fishers listing under the Endangered Species Act as warranted, but precluded because of other priorities and a lack of funds.

Land managers often have difficulty detecting forest carnivores because they tend to be elusive, solitary and on the go. Common methods for confirming a species at a site include using remotely-triggered cameras and barbed wire snares that snag hair. Both methods require the use of bait that can lure animals away from their typical range.

Scientists involved in the Vermont study, led by Robert A. Long, found detection dogs were three and a half times more successful at detecting species than cameras, the second best method. The dogs also only needed one visit per site to ensure a high probability of detection, an important consideration when long distances, difficult terrain and complex land ownership make research challenging.

Right now, dogs bring the most bang for the buck, compared to passive survey methods like snares and cameras, said Bill Zielinski, a Redwood Sciences Lab research ecologist and one of the studys authors.

Zielinski hopes one day scat detection dogs might be trained to find many of the rare carnivores in a given area. These surveys could aid land management decisions because carnivores are a barometer of ecosystem health and many are particularly sensitive to human activity. Scientists can use scat to determine stress levels, learn what animals are eating and identify individuals through DNA.

Successful scat detection dogs tend to be high-energy mutts, with an excessive play drive. Often, they were difficult pets left at shelters. Handlers reward the dogs by playing tug of war with a favorite toy.


'/>"/>

Contact: Roland Giller
rgiller@fs.fed.us
510-559-6327
US Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Ancient whale fall from Californias Año Nuevo Island one of youngest, most complete known
2. Ancient whale fall from Californias Ao Nuevo Island one of youngest, most complete known
3. New paper examines dams effects on California salmon
4. Microfossils disclose geologic history of eastern California
5. Massive California fires consistent with climate change
6. Southern California institutions to collaborate on stem cell research
7. Carnivores in recent study help Bergmanns rule reach the 21st century
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/26/2016)... -- Research and Markets has announced the ...  report to their offering.  , ,     (Logo: ... forecast the global multimodal biometrics market to grow ... 2016-2020.  Multimodal biometrics is being implemented ... healthcare, BFSI, transportation, automotive, and government for controlling ...
(Date:4/15/2016)... CHICAGO , April 15, 2016  A ... companies make more accurate underwriting decisions in a ... offering timely, competitively priced and high-value life insurance ... health screenings. With Force Diagnostics, rapid ... and lifestyle data readings (blood pressure, weight, pulse, ...
(Date:4/14/2016)... , April 14, 2016 ... Malware Detection, today announced the appointment of Eyal ... new role. Goldwerger,s leadership appointment comes at ... heels of the deployment of its platform at several ... biometric technology, which discerns unique cognitive and physiological factors, ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 Andrew ... http://doi.org/10.17925/OHR.2016.12.01.22 Published recently in ... journal from touchONCOLOGY, Andrew D Zelenetz , ... cancer care is placing an increasing burden on ... biologic therapies. With the patents on many biologics ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... ClinCapture, the only free validated ... will showcase its product’s latest features from June 26 to June 30, 2016 ... on Disrupting Clinical Trials in The Cloud during the conference. DIA (Drug ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... of intelligent tools designed, tuned and optimized exclusively for Okuma CNC machining centers ... The result of a collaboration among several companies with expertise in toolholding, cutting ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... PUNE, India , June 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... culture media market research report to its pharmaceuticals ... company profiles, product details and much more. ... market spread across 151 pages, profiling 15 companies ... now available at http://www.reportsnreports.com/reports/601420-global-cell-culture-media-industry-2016-market-research-report.html . ...
Breaking Biology Technology: