Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Fisher Decline Documented in California

07.07.2011
Vulnerable Forest Carnivore Population Decline Identified in Heart of Range

Wildlife Conservation Society and the Hoopa Valley Tribe identify significant fisher population decline and evaluate methods to monitor and inform population status

The Hoopa Valley Tribe, in cooperation with the Wildlife Conservation Society and the University of Massachusetts, reported a 73-percent decline in the density of fishers—a house-cat sized member of the weasel family and candidate for endangered species listing—on the Hoopa Valley Indian Reservation in northwestern California between 1998 and 2005.

The scientists speculate that changes in prey habitat, disease, and increases in predation – especially by bobcat – may be responsible for the population decline observed on the reservation. However, additional efforts are needed to determine trends in fisher populations and expand monitoring to other regions.

The study appears in the June edition of the online journal The Wildlife Society Bulletin. Co-authors on the study include Sean M. Matthews of WCS, J. Mark Higley and J. Scott Yaeger of the Wildlife Department of Hoopa Tribal Forestry, and Todd K. Fuller of the University of Massachusetts Department of Environmental Conservation.

Study data were collected using a mark-resight method, where fishers were captured, ear-tagged to identify individuals, and subsequently photographed at remote camera stations.

Study authors also report that different methods currently used by scientists to evaluate populations of fishers can produce different results and lead managers to ill-informed conclusions about population status. Mark-resight methods have long been held as the gold standard of wildlife population monitoring, yet are costly and labor-intensive.

WCS Conservation Biologist Sean Matthews said, “It is critical to understand the status of a population when making decisions about species conservation. Our study further demonstrates the importance in monitoring populations of imperiled species and the limitations of some methods in detecting large changes in population size.”

Mark Higley, the Hoopa Tribe’s wildlife biologist, said, “For the study of at-risk or sensitive populations, defensible, large-scale occupancy estimation or mark–recapture methods should be used to monitor changes in populations and to determine trends. Snapshots in time such as the two presented in the paper, give us some important insights, but do not tell the whole story. Long term demographic and occupancy monitoring studies may allow for modeling cause and effect factors such as changes in habitat, climate change, disease exposure, and increases in larger predators. These data are a cornerstone in evaluating extinction risk, identifying population-level threats, and determining the success of conservation measures.”

The Wildlife Conservation Society saves wildlife and wild places worldwide. We do so through science, global conservation, education and the management of the world's largest system of urban wildlife parks, led by the flagship Bronx Zoo. Together these activities change attitudes toward nature and help people imagine wildlife and humans living in harmony. WCS is committed to this mission because it is essential to the integrity of life on Earth. Visit: www.wcs.org

Special Note to the Media: If you would like to guide your readers or viewers to a web link where they can make donations in support of helping save wildlife and wild places, please direct them to: www.wcs.org/donation

Stephen Sautner | Newswise Science News
Further information:
http://www.wcs.org

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht International network connects experimental research in European waters
21.03.2017 | Leibniz-Institut für Gewässerökologie und Binnenfischerei (IGB)

nachricht World Water Day 2017: It doesn’t Always Have to Be Drinking Water – Using Wastewater as a Resource
17.03.2017 | ISOE - Institut für sozial-ökologische Forschung

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Giant Magnetic Fields in the Universe

Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.

The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.

Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...

Im Focus: Tracing down linear ubiquitination

Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.

Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...

Im Focus: Perovskite edges can be tuned for optoelectronic performance

Layered 2D material improves efficiency for solar cells and LEDs

In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...

Im Focus: Polymer-coated silicon nanosheets as alternative to graphene: A perfect team for nanoelectronics

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...

Im Focus: Researchers Imitate Molecular Crowding in Cells

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

International Land Use Symposium ILUS 2017: Call for Abstracts and Registration open

20.03.2017 | Event News

CONNECT 2017: International congress on connective tissue

14.03.2017 | Event News

ICTM Conference: Turbine Construction between Big Data and Additive Manufacturing

07.03.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

When Air is in Short Supply - Shedding light on plant stress reactions when oxygen runs short

23.03.2017 | Life Sciences

Researchers use light to remotely control curvature of plastics

23.03.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Sea ice extent sinks to record lows at both poles

23.03.2017 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>