Sexual segregation and density-related changes in habitat use in male and female Red deer (Cerrus elaphus)

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Abstract

Sex differences in diet and habitat use in Red deer occur in several areas of Scotland. In some cases, they are a consequence of differences in the altjtude levels used but, on Rhum, both sexes use the same levels, concentrating in different areas of the same plant communities. Segregation between the sexes is most pronounced for animals feeding on short grasslands and increases in winter and at high population density. These results support the hypothesis that stags are less tolerant of low plant biomasses than hinds and can be excluded from mutually preferred communities by indirect competition

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