Roosevelt elk habitat use in the Oregon Coast Range Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/xs55mh38v

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  • Few studies have evaluated non-migratory Roosevelt elk (Cervus elaphus roosevelti) interactions and habitat use on lands undergoing extensive timber removal. We captured and radio-tracked for 14 months representatives from 29 different bands of elk across a 37,000 ha area of Oregon's Coast Range. We identified 6 habitat variables within individual elk home ranges and across the study area. In general, elk use of these habitats within individual home ranges was not significantly ( < 0.05) different from availability. However, in pooling all elk locations and using the entire study area as the extent of habitat availability, a preference was shown for forb/grass habitats, areas within 300 m of the nearest water, and intermediate elevation areas. Elk avoided landtypes within 50 in of the nearest road. We evaluated levels of elk interaction and found remarkably low levels of interchange between adjacent bands of elk. Home range size ranged from 290 to 1896 ha. Because levels of interaction were low for elk in our study, we suggest that elk have strong site fidelity and band cohesion even in highly fragmented habitats. Areas nearest streams and with adequate amounts of forb/grass patches are preferred for home range location.
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