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Mammalian Biology

, Volume 79, Issue 1, pp 71–76 | Cite as

Habitat selection by two predators in an urban area: The stone marten and red fox in Wrocław (SW Poland)

  • Leszek DuduśEmail author
  • Andrzej Zalewski
  • Olga Kozioł
  • Zbigniew Jakubiec
  • Nina Król
Original Investigation

Abstract

We analyzed the habitat use of stone martens and red foxes based on incidental observations within the urbanized zone of Wrocław, SW Poland. We compared proportional habitat use at observation sites with randomly selected points and evaluated differences in distance to the water sources and to urban boundaries. Habitat use by both species was different from what we had expected from random points. Stone martens used high-density housing more frequently than red foxes and that expected from random points and avoided open and industrial areas, whereas red foxes used housing estates significantly more often than expected and avoided high-density housing. Both species used the other habitats according to their availability. Stone martens often selected habitats located closer to the city centre, whereas red foxes often selected habitats closer to urban borders than expected. The distribution of red foxes and stone martens is influenced by several factors including the availability of shelter and food, as well as the opportunity to move around undetected. Interspecific competition may also play an important role in habitat selection. Stone martens seem to be better adapted to urbanized areas than red foxes.

Keywords

Martes foina Vulpes vulpes Habitat use Predation avoidance Interspecific competition 

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Copyright information

© Deutsche Gesellschaft für Säugetierkunde 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Leszek Duduś
    • 1
    Email author
  • Andrzej Zalewski
    • 2
  • Olga Kozioł
    • 1
  • Zbigniew Jakubiec
    • 1
  • Nina Król
    • 3
  1. 1.Lower-Silesian Field StationInstitute of Nature Conservation, Polish Academy of SciencesWrocławPoland
  2. 2.Mammal Research InstitutePolish Academy of SciencesBiałowieżaPoland
  3. 3.Department of Microbial Ecology and Environmental ProtectionInstitute of Genetics and Microbiology, University of WroclawWrocławPoland

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