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Russian Journal of Biological Invasions

, Volume 4, Issue 4, pp 234–248 | Cite as

Mustela sibirica in the Middle Irtysh zone

  • B. Yu. Kassal
Article

Abstract

Beginning in the 1830s, the Siberian weasel invaded the Irtysh zone from the east to the west in the forest zone and the north to the south from the forest zone to the forest-steppe and steppe zones. Initially, the abundance of the species gradually increased, underwent a rise with a 1.5- to 2-fold biotic excess capacity of the territory, and then decreased, which was followed by the formation of cyclic changes in the abundance with double intervals averaging 22.5 years. Now, the highest density of the Siberian weasel population is registered in the northern and central forest steppe, it is lower in the forest zone and minimum in the southern forest steppe and steppe. In addition, the biotic relations of the Siberian weasel are characterized as follows: neutralism complemented by the elements of commensalism (with badger, weasel, steppe polecat, ermine, and American mink); antibiosis (amensalism with European pine marten, fox, corsac fox, raccoon dog; competition with sable; predation by wolverine); relations with sable and European pine marten are antagonistic in a number of habitats. In order to understand cyclic changes in the size of the Siberian weasel population inhabiting the Middle Irtysh zone, additional study is required.

Keywords

Middle Irtysh zone habitat population size and density biotic relations Siberian weasel Mustela sibirica 

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© Pleiades Publishing, Ltd. 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Omsk State Pedagogical UniversityOmskRussia

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