Serengeti real estate

Density vs. fitness-based indicators of lion habitat quality

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

62 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Habitat quality is typically inferred by assuming a direct relationship between consumer density and resource abundance, although it has been suggested that consumer fitness may be a more accurate measure of habitat quality. We examined density vs. fitness-based measures of habitat quality for lions in the Serengeti National Park, Tanzania. A 40-year average of female reproductive success (yearling cubs per female) was best explained by proximity to river confluences, whereas patterns of productivity (yearling cubs per km2) and adult female density (individuals per km2) were associated with more general measures of habitat quality and areas of shelter in poor habitat. This suggests that density may not accurately distinguish between high-quality 'source' areas and low-quality sites that merely provide refuges for effectively non-reproductive individuals. Our results indicate that density may be a misleading indicator of real estate value, particularly for populations that do not conform to an ideal free distribution.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1050-1060
Number of pages11
JournalEcology letters
Volume12
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2009

Fingerprint

Panthera leo
habitat quality
fitness
habitats
yearlings
ideal free distribution
confluence
Tanzania
shelter
refuge
reproductive success
national parks
national park
indicator
productivity
rivers
habitat
resource
river

Keywords

  • Habitat selection
  • Ideal despotic distribution
  • Ideal free distribution
  • Landscape
  • Lions
  • Resource selection
  • Scale
  • Serengeti National Park
  • Source-sink dynamics

Cite this

Serengeti real estate : Density vs. fitness-based indicators of lion habitat quality. / Mosser, Anna; Fryxell, John M.; Eberly, Lynn E; Packer, Craig.

In: Ecology letters, Vol. 12, No. 10, 01.10.2009, p. 1050-1060.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{6f317f1b355f44908b7996da5929cc72,
title = "Serengeti real estate: Density vs. fitness-based indicators of lion habitat quality",
abstract = "Habitat quality is typically inferred by assuming a direct relationship between consumer density and resource abundance, although it has been suggested that consumer fitness may be a more accurate measure of habitat quality. We examined density vs. fitness-based measures of habitat quality for lions in the Serengeti National Park, Tanzania. A 40-year average of female reproductive success (yearling cubs per female) was best explained by proximity to river confluences, whereas patterns of productivity (yearling cubs per km2) and adult female density (individuals per km2) were associated with more general measures of habitat quality and areas of shelter in poor habitat. This suggests that density may not accurately distinguish between high-quality 'source' areas and low-quality sites that merely provide refuges for effectively non-reproductive individuals. Our results indicate that density may be a misleading indicator of real estate value, particularly for populations that do not conform to an ideal free distribution.",
keywords = "Habitat selection, Ideal despotic distribution, Ideal free distribution, Landscape, Lions, Resource selection, Scale, Serengeti National Park, Source-sink dynamics",
author = "Anna Mosser and Fryxell, {John M.} and Eberly, {Lynn E} and Craig Packer",
year = "2009",
month = "10",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1111/j.1461-0248.2009.01359.x",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "12",
pages = "1050--1060",
journal = "Ecology Letters",
issn = "1461-023X",
publisher = "Wiley-Blackwell",
number = "10",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Serengeti real estate

T2 - Density vs. fitness-based indicators of lion habitat quality

AU - Mosser, Anna

AU - Fryxell, John M.

AU - Eberly, Lynn E

AU - Packer, Craig

PY - 2009/10/1

Y1 - 2009/10/1

N2 - Habitat quality is typically inferred by assuming a direct relationship between consumer density and resource abundance, although it has been suggested that consumer fitness may be a more accurate measure of habitat quality. We examined density vs. fitness-based measures of habitat quality for lions in the Serengeti National Park, Tanzania. A 40-year average of female reproductive success (yearling cubs per female) was best explained by proximity to river confluences, whereas patterns of productivity (yearling cubs per km2) and adult female density (individuals per km2) were associated with more general measures of habitat quality and areas of shelter in poor habitat. This suggests that density may not accurately distinguish between high-quality 'source' areas and low-quality sites that merely provide refuges for effectively non-reproductive individuals. Our results indicate that density may be a misleading indicator of real estate value, particularly for populations that do not conform to an ideal free distribution.

AB - Habitat quality is typically inferred by assuming a direct relationship between consumer density and resource abundance, although it has been suggested that consumer fitness may be a more accurate measure of habitat quality. We examined density vs. fitness-based measures of habitat quality for lions in the Serengeti National Park, Tanzania. A 40-year average of female reproductive success (yearling cubs per female) was best explained by proximity to river confluences, whereas patterns of productivity (yearling cubs per km2) and adult female density (individuals per km2) were associated with more general measures of habitat quality and areas of shelter in poor habitat. This suggests that density may not accurately distinguish between high-quality 'source' areas and low-quality sites that merely provide refuges for effectively non-reproductive individuals. Our results indicate that density may be a misleading indicator of real estate value, particularly for populations that do not conform to an ideal free distribution.

KW - Habitat selection

KW - Ideal despotic distribution

KW - Ideal free distribution

KW - Landscape

KW - Lions

KW - Resource selection

KW - Scale

KW - Serengeti National Park

KW - Source-sink dynamics

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=70349135436&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=70349135436&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1111/j.1461-0248.2009.01359.x

DO - 10.1111/j.1461-0248.2009.01359.x

M3 - Article

VL - 12

SP - 1050

EP - 1060

JO - Ecology Letters

JF - Ecology Letters

SN - 1461-023X

IS - 10

ER -