Relation of pine crop damage to species-specific density in a multi-ungulate assemblage

Zini, Valentina, Wäber, Kristin and Dolman, Paul ORCID: (2022) Relation of pine crop damage to species-specific density in a multi-ungulate assemblage. European Journal of Forest Research, 141 (3). pp. 489-502. ISSN 1612-4677

[thumbnail of s10342-022-01452-w]
PDF (s10342-022-01452-w) - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.

Download (1MB) | Preview


Deer management in forest ecosystems requires information on deer densities and impacts to inform culling decisions with a known target density for acceptable damage levels. In multi-ungulate assemblages, managers need knowledge of relative impacts by different species or guilds. In an extensive (195 km2) conifer forest in eastern England, we related Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris) leader damage (% dominant shoots browsed) in 48 restocked stands (1–3 years growth) over multiple years (n = 79 observations) to species-specific annual muntjac (Muntiacus reevesi), roe (Capreolus capreolus), fallow (Dama dama) and “large deer” densities (composite of annual fallow and multi-year mean red deer Cervus elaphus) using generalized mixed effects models. Forest-wide density surface models were calibrated through intensive annual thermal imaging distance transects and local densities around stands resampled within confidence bounds. Models also examined effects of ground vegetation and hare presence (Lepus europaeus). More pine leaders were browsed at higher fallow or large deer densities (22% and 18%, respectively, increased leader damage across inter-quartile range). Leader damage intensity was not influenced by ground vegetation, hares, muntjac (across the range 8.3–41.6 individuals km−2) or roe deer density (1.7–19.4 individuals km−2). To reduce pine crop damage to economically acceptable levels, managers need to reduce fallow deer to a density as low as 0.6 individuals km−2 (CI = 0.06–1.44, which is considered impractical) or reduce combined large deer density to 2.3 (CI = 1.18–3.46) individuals km−2. Reducing muntjac or roe abundance would minimally affect leader damage in this system, but may be important for other tree species. Multi-species deer management requires species-specific understanding of impacts and robust density estimates.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Funding Information: This study was funded by Forestry Commission England (East England Forest District). PDM award, grant number R203625.
Uncontrolled Keywords: deer damage,deer impactst,density surface models,forestry,invasive species management,landscape-scale deer management,deer impacts,landscape-scale deer management,invasive species management,deer damage,density surface models,forestry,forestry,ecology, evolution, behavior and systematics,plant science ,/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/1100/1107
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Science > School of Environmental Sciences
UEA Research Groups: Faculty of Science > Research Centres > Centre for Ecology, Evolution and Conservation
Faculty of Science > Research Groups > Environmental Biology
Related URLs:
Depositing User: LivePure Connector
Date Deposited: 14 Oct 2022 10:33
Last Modified: 28 Jan 2024 03:08
DOI: 10.1007/s10342-022-01452-w


Downloads per month over past year

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item