Food habits and prey selection of tiger and leopard in Mudumalai Tiger Re-serve, Tamil Nadu, India

J. Sci. Trans. Environ. Technov. J. Sci. Trans. Environ. Technov 01/2009; 2(2):170-181.

ABSTRACT Food habits and prey selection of tiger (Panthera tigris) and leopard (Panthera pardus) in Mudumalai Tiger Reserve, Tamil Nadu were assessed from January to August 2008. Chital, Axis axis was the most common prey species in the study area with a density of 55.3 ± 6.28 animals/km 2 followed by common langur Presbytis entellus with 25.9 ± 3.59 animals/ km 2 and gaur Bos gaurus with 11.4 ± 2.14 animals/km 2 .The estimated mean biomass of the potential prey species was 8365.02 kg/km 2 . A total of 179 tiger scats and 108 leopard scats were collected and the prey remains were analyzed. Sambar and chital were the principle prey species for tiger and leopard, respectively, as inferred from the relative biomass con-sumption of prey remains in tiger and leopard scats. The preferred prey species of leopard and tiger were sambar, common langur, wild pig and cattle. The dietary overlap between these two predators was 82% in terms of percentage frequency of occurrence of prey remains in the scats. In terms of biomass consumed, the estimated dietary overlap between tiger and leopard was 72%.

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Leopards have the largest natural distribution of felids, but have lost a third of their historical range, and their current CITES status is ‘Near Threatened’. Leopards are a highly sought after trophy species in Africa, although their populations are not monitored in most areas. Zimbabwe sets the highest leopard quota in Africa, but actual offtake does not reflect this, and the number of successful hunts has steadily declined in recent years. Accurate data on leopard populations is urgently needed, particularly where they are harvested. Camera-trapping is a powerful tool for non-invasively researching populations of rare and elusive felids, allowing accurate calculation of population density, and monitoring trends. However, unbaited camera-trapping is plagued by low capture rates, affecting the accuracy of the resultant density calculations. In addition, dependent cubs are underrepresented in the data, precluding an accurate description of demographic structure. We compared baited and unbaited camera-trapping methods and resultant data quality from two survey areas within our study site. Baited camera-trapping significantly increased leopard capture rates, as well as recording dependent cubs, which the unbaited method failed to detect. In addition, the baited method was more cost effective. Using baits to increase capture rates of leopards is more efficient than the unbaited method, and has the potential to accurately survey unmonitored populations; including where their density is too low to determine accurately via other means. These data are required for management of leopard populations, especially where harvested, and may be applied to improve monitoring efforts of other big cat species.
    Biological Conservation 08/2014; 176:153–161. DOI:10.1016/j.biocon.2014.05.021 · 4.04 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Machiara National Park, Pakistan, is famous for its faunal diversity especially the leopards. These leopards feed on a variety of wild and livestock animals, however the data regarding their diet composition is scanty. The present study was, therefore, designed to find out the seasonal variation in the diet composition of leopards (Panthera pardus) at Machiara National Park, Azad Jammu and Kashmir. Scat samples were collected during summer and winter seasons and hair mounting technique was used to identify different species consumed by P. pardus. Grey goral (18.08%) was amongst the most preferred dietary species consumed by P. pardus during winter season, while Indian pika (13.45%) was most frequently used as diet during summer season. Other species include musk deer, cape hare, monkeys, Royle's mountain vole, Kashmir marmot, stoat, musk rat, house mouse, flying squirrel, Himalayan palm civet, house rat, sheep, goat, cow, horse, red fox, birds and some unknown species. Furthermore, habitat analysis, predator-prey relationship and human-carnivore conflicts were also assessed.
  • Mammalian Species 01/2011; 43:1-30. DOI:10.1644/871.1

Full-text (2 Sources)

Available from
May 28, 2014