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:3/7/2017)... 7, 2017 Brandwatch , the leading social intelligence ... Prince,s Trust to uncover insights to support its reporting, help ... The UK,s leading youth charity will be using Brandwatch Analytics ... get a better understanding of the topics and issues that are ... ...
(Date:3/2/2017)... LONDON , March 2, 2017 Summary ... require to better understand Merck KGaA and its partnering ... report: https://www.reportbuyer.com/product/3605601/ Description The Partnering Deals ... into the partnering activity of one of the world,s ... reports are prepared upon purchase to ensure inclusion of ...
(Date:2/28/2017)... 28, 2017   Acuant , a leading provider ... significant enhancements to new and core technologies building upon ... include mobile and desktop Acuant FRM TM facial ... a real time manual review of identity documents by ... the fastest and most accurate capture software to streamline ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:3/29/2017)... ... March 29, 2017 , ... On the heels of the ... Colpitts Clinical Trial Travel has announced that it will manage travel services for its ... the first in the United States and Europe to offer travel management services specifically ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... ... ... Bactana Animal Health, a company developing natural products aimed at reducing the ... gut microbiota, today announced the closing of its first round of funding. , ... Management, LLC and a number of private investors. The company will use the financing ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... March 29, 2017 /PRNewswire/ - The University of Missouri ... a business of Sterigenics International, and General Atomics (GA), ... submitted to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). This ... of molybdenum-99 (Mo-99). Once operational, production from this facility ... demand for Mo-99, which currently must be imported from ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... The Global Microfluidic Chips Market by Manufacturers, Countries, Type and ... on the existing state of the global Microfluidic Chips industry especially ... and Asia-Pacific , South America ... Africa . ... Browse 172 Tables and Figures, 13 Major Company Profiles, spread across ...
Breaking Biology Technology: