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Type of publication: Journal Article
Type of document: Full Paper

Year: 2021

Authors: Selimovic, A; Schöll, EM; Bosseler, L; Hatlauf, J

Title: Habitat use of golden jackals (Canis aureus) in riverine areas of northern Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Source: European Journal of Wildlife Research 2021; 67: 14

Authors Vetmeduni Vienna:

Selimovic Aldin

Vetmed Research Units
Research Institute of Wildlife Ecology

Recently confirmed expansion of golden jackals (Canis aureus) into countries without any previous records poses questions, one of them focusing on the species potential and possibly varying habitat use. In this study, we investigated the presence and distribution of golden jackals in northern Bosnia and Herzegovina, where knowledge about golden jackal distribution and habitat use is still scarce. We used bioacoustic stimulation as a non-invasive tool to gather data on golden jackal presence. Habitat structures potentially selected by the species were assessed at 92 calling stations and used as input for binary logistic regression models. Our study area covered approximately 1150 km(2), and bioacoustic stimulation within this area resulted in an estimated minimum relative group density of 3.5 territorial groups per 100 km(2). We found territorial groups at distances between 15 and 38 km southwards from the river Sava but always within a maximum range of 3 km to perennial watercourses. Habitat analysis identified shrub vegetation and pastures as structures with a significant effect on the presence of resident golden jackals. Probability that golden jackals answered at calling stations increased with increasing surface area covered with pastures and shrubs. Distances between golden jackal territories and the nearest human settlement were relatively small. Our results indicate that structures like transitional woodland-shrubs and pastures, together with other potential influencing factors like local agricultural practices, low hunting pressure, diverse natural and anthropogenic food sources, could have benefited the settlement of golden jackals in the northern lowlands of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

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