Remember Me
Or use your Academic/Social account:


Or use your Academic/Social account:


You have just completed your registration at OpenAire.

Before you can login to the site, you will need to activate your account. An e-mail will be sent to you with the proper instructions.


Please note that this site is currently undergoing Beta testing.
Any new content you create is not guaranteed to be present to the final version of the site upon release.

Thank you for your patience,
OpenAire Dev Team.

Close This Message


Verify Password:
Verify E-mail:
*All Fields Are Required.
Please Verify You Are Human:
fbtwitterlinkedinvimeoflicker grey 14rssslideshare1
Thorn, M; Green, M; Bateman, PW; Cameron, EZ; Yarnell, RW; Scott, DM (2010)
Publisher: South African Bureau for Scientific Publications
Languages: English
Types: Article
Many carnivores are difficult and labour-intensive to detect, often leading to prohibitively high effort and cost in large-scale surveys. However, such studies provide information that is important for effective management and conservation. Here, we evaluate the suitability of three survey methods for landscape-scale multi-species monitoring. We compare sign surveys, spotlighting, and audio playbacks in terms of detection efficiency, precision, effort, and cost. Sign surveys out-performed the other methods in all comparison criteria, although supplementary methods were needed for some species and sites. We found that using established analysis techniques, robust landscape-scale abundance estimates would require unrealistically high effort and cost. Occupancy estimation required considerably lower sample sizes and was therefore more economical. We conclude that sign-based occupancy estimates constitute a versatile and efficient option for future large-scale, multi-species carnivore surveys.
  • The results below are discovered through our pilot algorithms. Let us know how we are doing!

    • BALDWIN, R.A. & BENDER, L.C. 2008. Distribution, occupancy, and habitat correlates of American martens (Martes americana) in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado. J. Mammal. 89: 419-427.
    • BALME, G.A., HUNTER, L.T.B. & SLOTOW, R. 2009. Evaluating methods for counting cryptic carnivores. J. Wildl. Manage. 73: 433-441.
    • BAREA-AZCON, J.M., VIRGOS, E., BALLESTEROSDUPERON, E., MOLEON, M. & CHIROSA, M. 2007. Surveying carnivores at large spatial scales: a comparison of four broad-applied methods. Biodiversity Conserv. 16: 1213-1230.
    • BOULANGER, J., WHITE, G.C., PROCTOR, M., STENHOUSE, G., MACHUTCHON, G. & HIMMER, S. 2008. Use of occupancy models to estimate the influence of previous live captures on DNA-based detection probabilities of grizzly bears. J. Wildl. Manage. 72: 589-595.
    • BUCKLAND, S.T., ANDERSON, D.R., BURNHAM, K.P. & LAAKE, J.L. 1993. Distance sampling: estimating abundance of biological populations. Chapman and Hall, London.
    • BURGENER, N. & GUSSET, M. 2003. The feeding habits of brown hyaenas (Hyaena brunnea) on a game ranch in Limpopo Province, South Africa. Afr. Zool. 38: 181-184.
    • CARBONE, C., MADDOX, T., FUNSTON, P.J., MILLS, M.G.L., GRETHER, G.F. & VAN VALKENBURGH, B. 2009. Parallels between playbacks and Pleistocene tar seeps suggest sociality in an extinct sabretooth cat, Smilodon. Biol. Lett. 5(1): 81-85.
    • CREEL, S. & CREEL, N.M. 1996. Limitation of African wild dogs by competition with larger carnivores. Conserv. Biol. 10: 526-538.
    • DE VILLIERS, B. & MANGOLD, S. 2002. The biophysical environment. In: D. Walmsley, J. Walmsley, S. Mangold & M. Kalule-Sabiti (Eds), North West Province state of the environment report. Directorate of Environment and Conservation Management, North West Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Environment, Mmabatho.
    • DUCKWORTH, J.W. 1992. Sighting frequencies of nocturnal mammals in an Ethopian Rift Valley National Park. Afr. J. Ecol. 30: 90-97.
    • EDWARDS, G.P., DE PREU, N.D., SHAKESHAFT, B.J. & CREALY, I.V. 2000. An evaluation of two methods of assessing feral cat and dingo abundance in central Australia. Wildlife Res. 27: 143-149.
    • FORESMAN, K. & PEARSON, D.E. 1998. Comparison of proposed survey procedures for detection of forest carnivores. J. Wildl. Manage. 62: 1217-1226.
    • GOMPPER, M.E., KAYS, R.W., RAY, J.C., LAPOINT, S.D., BOGAN, D.A. & CRYAN, J.R. 2006. A comparison of noninvasive techniques to survey carnivore communities in northeastern North America. Wildlife Soc. B 34: 1142-1151.
    • HEYDON, M.J., REYNOLDS, J.C. & SHORT, M.J. 2000. Variation in abundance of foxes (Vulpes vulpes) between three regions of rural Britain, in relation to landscape and other variables. J. Zool. Lond. 251: 253-264.
    • HINES, J.E., NICHOLS, J.D., ROYLE, J.A., MACKENZIE, D.I., GOPALASWAMY, A.M., SAMBA KUMAR, N. & KARANTH, K.U. In press. Tigers on trails: occupancy modeling for cluster sampling. Ecol. Appl. DOI: 10.1890/09-0321
    • HOFFMAN, T. & ASHWELL, A. 2001. Nature divided: Land degradation in South Africa. University of Cape Town, Cape Town.
    • HOUSER, A-M., SOMERS, M.J., BOAST, L.K., KLEIN, R.A. & GOOD, K.M. 2009. Spoor density as a measure of true density of a known population of free ranging wild cheetah in Botswana. J. Zool., Lond. 278: 108-115.
    • INSKIP, C. & ZIMMERMANN, A. 2009. Human-felid conflict: a review of patterns and priorities worldwide. Oryx 43: 18-34.
    • KARANTH, K.U. & NICHOLS, J.D. (Eds) 2002. Monitoring tigers and their prey: a manual for researchers, managers and conservationists in tropical Asia. Centre for Wildlife Studies, Bangalore.
    • KENDALL, C.K., METZGAR, L.H., PATTERSON, D.A. & STEELE, B.M. 1992. Power of sign surveys to monitor population trends. Ecol. Appl. 2: 422-430.
    • KIFFNER, C., WALTERT, M., MEYER, B. & MUHLENBERG, M. 2007. Response of lions (Panthera leo LINNAEUS 1758) and spotted hyaenas (Crocuta crocuta ERXLEBEN 1777) to sound playbacks.Afr. J. Ecol. 46: 223-226.
    • LINKIE, M., DINATA, Y., NUGROHO, A. & HAIDIR, I.A. 2007. Estimating occupancy of a data deficient mammalian species living in tropical rainforests: sun bears in the Kerinci Seblat region, Sumatra. Biol. Conserv. 137: 20-27.
    • MACKENZIE, D.I. & KENDALL, W.L. 2002. How should detection probability be incorporated into estimates of relative abundance? Ecology 83: 2387-2393.
    • MACKENZIE, D.I., NICHOLS, J.D., LACHMAN, G.B., DROEGE, S., ROYLE, J.A. & LANGTIMM, C.A. 2002. Estimating site occupancy rates when detection probabilities are less than one. Ecology 83: 2248- 2255.
    • MACKENZIE, D.I., NICHOLS, J.D., ROYLE, J.A., POLLOCK, K., BAILEY, L. & HINES. J.E. 2006. Occupancy estimation and modelling - inferring patterns and dynamics of species occurrence. Elsevier, London.
    • MAHON, P.S., BANKS, P.B. & DICKMAN, C.R. 1998. Population indices for wild carnivores: a critical study in sand-dune habitat, south-western Queensland. Wildlife Res. 24: 11-22.
    • MILLS, M.G.L. & HOFER, H. 1998. Hyaenas: status, survey and action plan, IUCN/SSC Hyaena Specialist Group, Gland.
    • MILLS, M.G.L., JURITZ, J.M. & ZUCCHINI, W. 2001. Estimating the size of spotted hyaena (Crocuta crocuta) populations through playback recordings allowing for non-response. Anim. Conserv. 4: 335-343.
    • MONADJEM, A., MONADJEM, A. C. & PUTNAM, J. 1998. Sighting frequencies of nocturnal mammals in Swaziland. Afr. J. Ecol. 36: 280-285.
    • NOWELL, K. & JACKSON, P. (Eds) 1996. Wild cats: status survey and conservation action plan. IUCN/SSC Cat Specialist Group, IUCN, Gland and Cambridge.
    • O'BRIEN, T.G., KINNIARD, M.F. & WIBISONO, H.T. 2003. Crouching tigers, hidden prey: Sumatran tiger and prey populations in a tropical forest landscape. Anim. Conserv. 6: 131-139.
    • OGUTU, J.O. & DUBLIN, H.T. 1998. The response of lions and spotted hyaenas to sounds playbacks as a technique for estimating population size. Afr. J. Ecol. 36: 83-95.
    • OGUTU, J.O., BHOLA, N. & REID, R. 2005. The effects of pastoralism and protection on the density and distribution of carnivores and their prey in the Mara ecosystem of Kenya. J. Zool. Lond. 265 281-293.
    • PLUMPTRE, A.J. 2000. Monitoring mammal populations with line transect techniques in African forests. J. Appl. Ecol. 37: 356-368.
    • ROYLE, J.A. & NICHOLS, J.D. 2003. Estimating abundance from repeated presence-absence data or point counts. Ecology 84: 777-790.
    • SCOTT, D.M., WAITE, S., MADDOX, T., FREER, R. & DUNSTONE, N. 2005. The validity and precision of spotlighting for surveying desert mammal communities. J. Arid Environ. 61: 589-601.
    • SILLERO-ZUBIRI, C. & GOTTELLI, M.D. 1992. Population ecology of spotted hyaena in an equatorial mountain forest. Afr. J. Ecol. 30: 292-300.
    • SILLERO-ZUBIRI, C., HOFFMANN, M. & MACDONALD, D.W. 2004. Canids: foxes, wolves, jackals and dogs: Status survey and conservation action plan. IUCN/SCC Canid Specialist Group. IUCN, Gland and Cambridge.
    • SILVEIRA, L., JACOMO, A.T.A. & DINIZ, J.A.F. 2003. Camera trap, line transect census and track surveys: a comparative evaluation. Biol. Conserv. 114: 351- 355.
    • STANDER, P.E. 1998. Spoor counts as indices of large carnivore populations: the relationship between spoor frequency, sampling effort and true density. J. Appl. Ecol. 35: 378-385.
    • STONE, E.L. 2005. Estimating the abundance of brown hyaena (Hyaena brunnea) in Pilanesberg National Park and Mankwe Game Reserve, South Africa using audio-playbacks, faecal surveys and spotlight counts. Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester.
    • STUART, C. & STUART, T. 2000. A field guide to the tracks and signs of southern and East African wildlife. Struik, Cape Town.
    • TABERLET, P., LUIKART, G. & GEFFEN, E. 2001. New methods for obtaining and analyzing genetic data from free-ranging carnivores. In: J.L. Gittleman, S.M. Funk, D.W. Macdonald & R.K. Wayne (Eds), Carnivore conservation (pp. 313-334). Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.
    • THORN, M. 2009. Carnivores of the North West Province, South Africa: abundance occupancy and conflict with humans.University of Brighton, Brighton.
    • THORN, M., SCOTT, D.M., GREEN, M., BATEMAN, P.W. & CAMERON, E.Z. 2009. Estimating brown hyaena occupancy using baited camera traps. S. Afr. J. Wildl. Res. 39: 1-10.
    • TLADI, B., BALOYI, T. & MARFO, C. 2002. Chapter 6. Settlement and land use patterns. In: D. Walmsley, J. Walmsley, S. Mangold & M. Kalule-Sabiti (Eds), North West Province State of the Environment Report. Directorate of Environment and Conservation Management.North West Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Environment, Mmabatho.
    • TREVES, A. & KARANTH, K.U. 2003. Human-carnivore conflict and perspectives on carnivore management worldwide. Conserv. Biol. 17: 1491-1499.
    • WAITE, S. 2000. Statistical ecology in practice: a guide to analysing environmental and ecological field data. Pearson Education Limited, Harlow.
    • WALKER, C. 1996. Signs of the wild: A field guide to the spoor and signs of the mammals of southern Africa. Struik, Cape Town.
    • WILSON, G.J. & DELAHAY, R.J. 2001. A review of methods to estimate the abundance of terrestrial carnivores using field signs and observation. Wildlife Res. 28: 151-164.
    • ZIELINSKI, W.J. 1997. Monitoring mesocarnivore population status. In: J. Harris & C. Ogan (Eds), Mesocarnivores of northern California: biology, management, and survey techniques (pp. 119-127). The Wildlife Society, California North Coast Chapter, Humboldt State University, Arcata.
  • No similar publications.

Share - Bookmark

Cite this article