ARPHA Conference Abstracts : Conference Abstract
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Conference Abstract
Habitat use and movement of Garden Dormice in the Harz Mountains, Germany
expand article infoMona Wuttke, Julia-Marie Battermann, Dania Richter, Sven Büchner§,|
‡ Technische Universität Braunschweig, Institute of Geoecology, Landscape Ecology and Environmental Systems Analysis, Langer Kamp 19c, D-38106 Braunschweig, Germany
§ Justus-Liebig-University Giessen, Clinic for birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish, Working Group for Wildlife Research, Frankfurter Strasse 114, 35392 Giessen, Germany
| Senckenberg Museum of Natural History Görlitz; Am Museum 1, 02826 Görlitz, Germany
Open Access

Abstract

The Garden Dormouse (Eliomys quercinus) is an example of an endangered species with a distribution focus in Germany. Little is known about its habitat use and movements. Radio tracking is a common method used to analyze movement patterns to identify specific habitat requirements. During 11 weeks from May until September 2021, we tracked four individuals (2 females, 2 males) in the Harz Mountains National Park (~700 m a.s.l.). The study area was characterized by a predominance of rocks and spruce. Within one hour, males moved a distance of up to 173.95 m, females covered a maximum distance of 155.62 m. We analyzed whether a hiking trail cutting through the study area represented a potential barrier for the movement of these animals. Three individuals were tracked crossing the path up to 4 times a night. Raspberry bushes along the path were a potential incentive for crossing. A dense rocky cover and a well-developed shrub layer with raspberry bushes within spruce woodlands seem favorable to the presence of Garden Dormice. For the conservation of this species, it is necessary to protect similar habitats. To connect areas with populations of garden dormice, it may be important to encourage bushes with wild fruits among forest edges and pathways.

Keywords

In search of the Garden Dormouse, radio tracking

Presenting author

Mona Wuttke

Presented at

Poster presentation at the 11th International Dormice Conference (May 9-13, 2022)

Funding program

This project is/was funded by the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation with resources from the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Nuclear Safety and Consumer Protection.