Mechanisms determining the spatial distribution of microtine predators on the Arctic tundra
Article first published online: 5 JAN 2002
British Ecological Society 1997
Journal of Animal Ecology
Volume 67, Issue 1, pages 91–98, January 1998
How to Cite
Wiklund, C. G., Kjellén, N. and Isakson, E. (1998), Mechanisms determining the spatial distribution of microtine predators on the Arctic tundra. Journal of Animal Ecology, 67: 91–98. doi: 10.1046/j.1365-2656.1998.00177.x
- Issue published online: 5 JAN 2002
- Article first published online: 5 JAN 2002
- Cited By
- microtine predators;
- guild structure;
1. We studied the spatial distribution of avian microtine predators using data from 19 study areas on the tundra of northern Siberia.
2. Numbers of snowy owls, and long-tailed skuas and pomarine skuas depended strongly on lemming density. However, a significant relationship between lemming density and number of rough-legged buzzards appeared first after removal of the effect of snowy owl abundance on the distribution of rough-legged buzzards.
3. We applied a recently developed method (Manly 1995) to examine co-occurrences of species and found that rough-legged buzzards and snowy owls did not co-occur while snowy owls, long-tailed skuas and pomarine skuas did.
4. There are large differences in nest construction and chick behaviour between rough-legged buzzards and the three other species. Moreover, the snow owl is a polyphagous predator preying also on large birds including raptor chicks. Therefore, we propose that reduced risk of nest predation favours rough-legged buzzards nesting away from snowy owls.
5. Variations in abundance of the two lemming species did not seem to influence the distributions of snowy owls and rough-legged buzzards. Neither was it likely that latitudinally related factors such as breeding season length affected the distribution of rough-legged buzzards.