Differential Responses to Hunting in Two Sympatric Species of Brocket Deer (Mazama americana and M. nana)

Authors

  • Mario S. Di Bitetti,

    Corresponding author
    1. National Research Council of Argentina (CONICET), Laboratorio de Investigaciones Ecológicas de las Yungas (LIEY), Universidad Nacional de Tucumán, Argentina
    2. Asociación Civil CeIBA (Centro de Investigaciones del Bosque Atlántico). Yapeyú 23, 3370 Puerto Iguazú, Misiones, Argentina
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  • Agustín Paviolo,

    1. National Research Council of Argentina (CONICET), Laboratorio de Investigaciones Ecológicas de las Yungas (LIEY), Universidad Nacional de Tucumán, Argentina
    2. Asociación Civil CeIBA (Centro de Investigaciones del Bosque Atlántico). Yapeyú 23, 3370 Puerto Iguazú, Misiones, Argentina
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  • Carolina A. Ferrari,

    1. Asociación Civil CeIBA (Centro de Investigaciones del Bosque Atlántico). Yapeyú 23, 3370 Puerto Iguazú, Misiones, Argentina
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  • Carlos De Angelo,

    1. National Research Council of Argentina (CONICET), Laboratorio de Investigaciones Ecológicas de las Yungas (LIEY), Universidad Nacional de Tucumán, Argentina
    2. Asociación Civil CeIBA (Centro de Investigaciones del Bosque Atlántico). Yapeyú 23, 3370 Puerto Iguazú, Misiones, Argentina
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  • Yamil Di Blanco

    1. Asociación Civil CeIBA (Centro de Investigaciones del Bosque Atlántico). Yapeyú 23, 3370 Puerto Iguazú, Misiones, Argentina
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Corresponding author; e-mail: dibitetti@yahoo.com.ar

ABSTRACT

Hunting by humans may affect the abundance and activity patterns of game species. We examined the effect of hunting on the abundance and activity patterns of sympatric red brocket deer Mazama americana and dwarf brocket deer M. nana. We conducted four camera-trap surveys (158 sampling stations, 10,244 trap-days, total area sampled 1200 km2) in three areas within the Atlantic Forest of Misiones, Argentina, that differ in protection and hunting pressure. We used logistic regression and tests of independence to evaluate if protection, hunting pressure, and other independent variables affect the probability of recording each species and their recording rate. We used the Mardia–Watson–Wheeler test to examine if the daily activity pattern differs between species and changes with hunting pressure. Red brocket deer were more frequently recorded (397 records, 58% of stations) than dwarf brocket deer (100 records, 37% of stations). The probability of recording red brockets was higher in areas with better protection and increased with the distance to the main accesses used by poachers. The probability of recording dwarf brockets was higher in areas with low protection. Red brockets were more nocturnal than dwarf brockets, a difference that may reduce interspecific competition. However, red brockets were more diurnal in the best-protected areas, suggesting that they can adjust their activity to local hunting pressure. Hunting has opposite effects on the abundance of these deer and may facilitate their coexistence. Hunting should be carefully controlled or managed to ensure the conservation of these little known species.

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