Capitani, Claudia and Mattioli, Luca and Avanzinelli, Elisa and Gazzola, Andrea and Lamberti, Paolo and Mauri, Lorenza and Scandura, Massimo and Viviani, Alessia and Apollonio, Marco (2006) Selection of rendezvous sites and reuse of pup raising areas among wolves Canis lupus of north-eastern Apennines, Italy. Acta Theriologica, Vol. 51 (4), p. 395-404. ISSN 0001-7051. Article.
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A coarse scale analysis was carried out of factors affecting rendezvous site selection and fidelity to pup raising areas in wolf Canis lupus Linnaeus, 1758 packs inhabiting the north eastern Apennines, Italy. From 1993 to 2004, 44 rendezvous sites were identified, and compared with random sites for variables related to topography, habitat, and human presence. Rendezvous sites were significantly more frequent inside protected areas and at a significantly greater distance from paved roads and villages than random sites. Moreover, they were located on a significantly steeper slope and at a higher absolute elevation than random sites, whereas we did not observe selection of a particular aspect. Deciduous forests were selected, whereas open areas were not used. Canopy cover above 70% was positively selected. Distance from protected areas border and paved roads, and presence of deciduous forest proved the main factors affecting rendezvous site distribution. In four cases we observed the reuse of the same rendezvous sites for two consecutive years. Some packs tended to locate their rendezvous sites in small portions of their territory, thus implying that some areas are more suitable for pup raising.
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