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Acta Theriologica

, Volume 48, Issue 4, pp 515–525 | Cite as

The density and distribution of badger setts in the Sudety Mountains, Poland

  • Jolanta Bartmańska
  • Monika Nadolska
Article

Abstract

The density and distribution of badgerMeles meles (Linnaeus, 1758) setts was estimated by questionnaires and field studies, carried out in the Sudety Mountains between 1995–2002. The questionnaire referred to the whole territory of Polish Sudety Mts, while field studies were conducted in four different habitat types: low mountains with a mosaic farm-forest landscape, highly industrialised hilly areas, high mountain ranges of natural character and high mountain ranges of severe microclimate and heavily destroyed tree stands. On the basis of both questionnaires and field surveys, a total of 378 badger setts, classified according to their size and status, were identified. Among these, 119 (31.5%) were situated on three areas, while in the fourth area we did not find any badger setts. According to their size and traces of intensive occupation, 54 setts were regarded as main badger setts. The mean density of main setts on three areas was much the same and amounted to 0.05–0.07/km2 of their total surface, despite differences in their natural environment and agricultural or industrial changes in landscapes. In the Sudety Mts badgers selected settlements in forest habitats, bordering rich in food open areas. The density of main setts in forest areas ranged from 0.12 to 0.33/km2 depending on the proportion of forest, type and age of tree stands and size of forest complexes. The mean distance of main setts from open areas ranged from 209 to 280 m. The mean nearest neighbour distance (NND) between main setts ranged from 2.85 to 3.75 km. The home range size estimated for a social group varied from 7.9 to 13.6 km2. The highest occupied setts of our study were found on the Śnieżnik Massif, at an altitude of 700 m a.s.l.

Key words

Meles meles occurrence distribution sett location density Sudety Mountains 

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Copyright information

© Mammal Research Institute, Bialowieza, Poland 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jolanta Bartmańska
    • 1
  • Monika Nadolska
    • 2
  1. 1.Zoological Institute of Wrocław UniversityWrocławPoland
  2. 2.Department of Zoology and EcologyAgricultural University of WrocławWrocławPoland

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