Herbert H T Prins

Herbert H T Prins
Wageningen University & Research | WUR · Department of Behavioral Ecology

Prof. Dr.

About

627
Publications
208,411
Reads
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22,526
Citations
Additional affiliations
January 1998 - present
Nature Conservation Foundation
Position
  • Advisory Board
January 1992 - October 2019
Wageningen University & Research
Position
  • Chair
September 1981 - September 1985
University of Groningen
Position
  • PhD Student

Publications

Publications (627)
Article
Full-text available
Many populations of birds depend on networks of sites to survive. Sufficient connectivity that allows movement between the sites throughout the year is a critical requirement. We found that existing international frameworks and policies for identifying sites important for bird conservation focus more at the level of the individual site than on the...
Article
Full-text available
Fire is rampant throughout subtropical South and Southeast Asian grasslands. However, very little is known about the role of fire and pyric herbivory on the functioning of highly productive subtropical monsoon grasslands lying within the Cwa climatic region. We assessed the temporal effect of fire on postfire regrowth quality and associated pyric‐h...
Chapter
Often conservationists suffer from the ‘shifting base line syndrome’. We illustrate this by elucidating the natural history of Tanzania’s northern Rift Valley over the past centuries. White rhinoceros and possibly the sable antelope went extinct five centuries ago. Two centuries ago Maasai cattle started competing with plains wildlife, but a reset...
Article
Full-text available
1. We assessed the hypothesized negative correlation between the influence of multiple predators and body condition and fecundity of the European hare, from 13 areas in the Netherlands. 2. Year- round abundance of predators was estimated by hunters. We quantified predator influence as the sum of their field metabolic rates, as this sum reflects the...
Preprint
Full-text available
Indiscriminate fire is rampant throughout subtropical South and Southeast Asian grasslands. However, very little is known about the role of fire and pyric herbivory on the functioning of highly productive subtropical monsoon grasslands lying within Cwa-climatic region. We collected grass samples from 60 m x 60 m plots and determined vegetation phys...
Article
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Triangle Island on Canada's Pacific coast is home to a large, globally important seabird breeding colony. The shrub Salmonberry Rubus spectabilis and tussock-forming Tufted Hairgrass Deschampsia cespitosa together form ~70% of vegetation coverage and contain the vast majority (~90%) of seabird nesting burrows. Salmonberry has in recent decades grea...
Article
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The high-altitude ecosystem of the Tibetan Plateau in China is a biodiversity hotspot that provides unique habitats for endemic and relict species along an altitudinal gradient at the eastern edge. Acquiring biodiversity information in this area, where the average altitude is over 4000 m, has been difficult but has been aided by recent developments...
Preprint
Full-text available
Habitat availability determines the distribution of migratory waterfowl along their flyway, which further influences the transmission and spatial spread of avian influenza viruses (AIVs). The extensive habitat loss in the East Asian-Australasian Flyway (EAAF) may have potentially altered the virus transmission and spread, but those consequences are...
Article
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Subtropical grasslands interspersed in forests often present mosaics of tall grasslands and grazing lawns with a high variation in structure, biomass and nutrient concentration. However, the impact of such variation on forage quality is still poorly known. We quantified physical and chemical properties of grasses of grazing lawns and tall grassland...
Article
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As a source of emerging infectious diseases, wildlife assemblages (and related spatial patterns) must be quantitatively assessed to help identify high-risk locations. Previous assessments have largely focussed on the distributions of individual species; however, transmission dynamics are expected to depend on assemblage composition. Moreover, disea...
Article
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In areas where farmland borders protected areas, wildlife may be attracted to crops and cause substantial financial damage for farmers. Elephants, in particular, can destroy a year's harvest in a single night, and can also cause damage to buildings and other farm structures. Few studies have examined whether damage caused by wild elephants increase...
Article
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p>High density of herbivore populations can lead to intense foraging competition and depletion of food consequently lowering diet quality and population performance. We tested for the effects of the density of eastern black rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis michaeli) in nine in situ populations of 0.01–0.7 individuals per km<sup>2</sup> density range on...
Article
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Wildlife crime is one of the most profitable illegal industries worldwide. Current actions to reduce it are far from effective and fail to prevent population declines of many endangered species, pressing the need for innovative anti-poaching solutions. Here, we propose and test a poacher early warning system that is based on the movement responses...
Article
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p>Despite ongoing loss of diversity in freshwater ecosystems, and despite mitigation measures to halt this loss, it is still not clear what ecological drivers underlies lotic biodiversity. A complicating factor is that two of the main drivers, oxygen and temperature, are correlated, and hence studies towards drivers of lotic diversity are confounde...
Preprint
Full-text available
Wildlife crime is one of the most profitable illegal industries worldwide. Current actions to reduce it are far from effective and fail to prevent population declines of many endangered species, pressing the need for innovative anti-poaching solutions. Here, we propose and test a real-time poacher early warning system that is based on the movement...
Article
Full-text available
Many ungulate populations have a complex history of isolation and translocation. Consequently, ungulate populations may have experienced substantial reductions in the level of overall gene flow, yet simultaneously have augmented levels of long-distance gene flow. To investigate the effect of this dual anthropogenic effect on the genetic landscape o...
Article
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Background: Animals respond to environmental variation by changing their movement in a multifaceted way. Recent advancements in biologging increasingly allow for detailed measurements of the multifaceted nature of movement, from descriptors of animal movement trajectories (e.g., using GPS) to descriptors of body part movements (e.g., using tri-axia...
Article
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Gastrointestinal helminth-microbiota associations are shaped by various ecological processes. The effect of the ecological context of the host on the bacterial microbiome and gastrointestinal helminth parasites has been tested in a number of ecosystems and experimentally. This study takes the important step to look at these two groups at the same t...
Article
Full-text available
en Plant available moisture and plant available nutrients in soils influence forage quality and availability and subsequently affect reproductive performance in herbivores. However, the relationship of soil moisture, soil nutrients and woody forage with reproductive performance indicators is not well understood in mega‐browsers yet these three are...
Article
Numerous unknown factors influence anthrax epidemiology in multi-host systems, especially at wildlife/livestock/human interfaces. Serology tests for anti-anthrax antibodies in carnivores are useful tools in identifying the presence or absence of Bacillus anthracis in a range. These were employed to ascertain if the disease pattern followed the reco...
Article
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Wild vertebrate populations all over the globe are in decline, with poaching being the second-most-important cause. The high poaching rate of rhinoceros may drive these species into extinction within the coming decades. Some stakeholders argue to lift the ban on international rhino horn trade to potentially benefit rhino conservation, as current in...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: Animals respond to environmental variation by changing their movement in a multifaceted way. Recent advancements in biologging increasingly allow for detailed measurements of the multifaceted nature of movement, from descriptors of animal movement trajectories (e.g., using GPS) to descriptors of body part movements (e.g., using tri-axia...
Article
Migration can influence dynamics of pathogen-host interactions. However, it is not clearly known how migration pattern, in terms of the configuration of the migration network and the synchrony of migration, affects infection prevalence. We therefore applied a discrete-time SIR model, integrating environmental transmission and migration, to various...
Article
The unique geochemistry surrounding the Palabora Mining Company (PMC) land may act as a micronutrient hotspot, attracting elephants to the area. The PMC produces refined copper and extracts phosphates and other minerals. Understanding the spatial influence of geochemistry on the home range size of African elephants is important for elephant populat...
Preprint
Delivering the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) requires balancing demands on land between agriculture (SDG 2) and biodiversity (SDG 15). The production of vegetable oils in general, and palm oil in particular, is perhaps the most controversial illustration of these trade-offs. Global annual demand for vegetable oil for food, animal feed and fu...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: Animals respond to environmental variation by changing their movement in a multifaceted way. Recent advancements in biologging increasingly allow for detailed measurements of the multifaceted nature of movement, from descriptors of animal movement trajectories (e.g., using GPS) to descriptors of body part movements (e.g., using tri-axia...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: Animals respond to environmental variation by changing their movement in a multifaceted way. Recent advancements in biologging increasingly allow for detailed measurements of the multifaceted nature of movement, from descriptors of animal movement trajectories (e.g., using GPS) to descriptors of body part movements (e.g., using tri-axia...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: Animals respond to environmental variation by changing their movement in a multifaceted way. Recent advancements in biologging increasingly allow for detailed measurements of the multifaceted nature of movement, from descriptors of animal movement trajectories (e.g., using GPS) to descriptors of body part movements (e.g., using tri-axia...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: Animals respond to environmental variation by changing their movement in a multifaceted way. Recent advancements in biologging increasingly allow for detailed measurements of the multifaceted nature of movement, from descriptors of animal movement trajectories (e.g., using GPS) to descriptors of body part movements (e.g., using tri-axia...
Preprint
Background: Changes in land use and associated ecosystem change have been described as one of the causal drivers in emerging and re-emerging of infectious diseases, but there is a notable scarcity of scientific knowledge to show whether, and how, land use change plays this role. Land use change may include the invasion of non-native woody species....
Chapter
In this Chapter we review studies that model the dynamics of tropical savannas and the effects of grazing and browsing on the vegetation. Many empirical studies illustrate the large impact that grazers and browsers can have on savanna vegetation, both directly and indirectly. We summarize this understanding in a simple model to capture the dynamics...
Chapter
Globally, many terrestrial ecosystems have been and are being heavily influenced by human activity, both directly and indirectly. Humanity and our domestic animals (1.4 billion cattle, 1.2 billion sheep and 0.5 billion goats, but only some 120 million horses and 13 million camels; Encyclopedia.com) have now so much impact on global ecosystems that...
Chapter
Full-text available
Since the publication of the “The Ecology of Browsing and Grazing” (Gordon and Prins, The ecology of browsing and grazing. Springer, 2008), a number of researchers have taken the approach outlined in the book to assess the impacts of differences in food and nutrient supply on the ecology of other vertebrate taxa. In line with the slightly altered e...
Chapter
Full-text available
Large mammalian herbivores and the ecosystems in which they live are intimately connected through the food choices the animals make. Herbivores eat plants and plants have evolved mechanisms to defend themselves from being eaten. This arms race between plants and vertebrate herbivores continues to this day. The outcomes of this arms race are seen in...
Chapter
Full-text available
The world’s 240 ungulate species belong largely to the same guild, feeding on terrestrial plants, and yet, ungulates typically occur in multi-species assemblages. What allows multiple ungulate species dependent on similar resources to coexist? We focus on the role of variation in ungulate body masses and their feeding adaptations in facilitating co...
Article
Full-text available
Understanding risk factors for the spread of infectious diseases over time and across the landscape is critical for managing disease risk. While habitat connectivity and characteristics of local and neighboring animal (i.e., host) assemblages are known to influence the spread of diseases, the interactions among these factors remain poorly understoo...
Article
Full-text available
Theory on the density-body mass (DBM) relationship predicts that the density of animal species decreases by the power of −0.75 per unit increase in their body mass, or by the power of −1 when taxa across trophic levels are studied. This relationship is, however, largely debated as the slope often deviates from the theoretical predictions. Here, we...
Article
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1. Animal population sizes are often estimated using aerial sample counts by human observers, both for wildlife and livestock. The associated methods of counting remained more or less the same since the 1970s, but suffer from low precision and low accuracy of population estimates. 2. Aerial counts using cost‐efficient Unmanned Aerial Vehicles or mi...
Article
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Large areas of agricultural land have been abandoned in European Russia since 1991, triggering succession toward more wooded landscapes, especially in northern regions where conditions for agriculture are more challenging. We hypothesize that this process has contributed to a southward shift by migratory Atlantic Greater White‐fronted geese, as sto...
Article
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Habitat loss can trigger migration network collapse by isolating migratory bird breeding grounds from nonbreeding grounds. Theoretically, habitat loss can have vastly different impacts depending on the site's importance within the migratory corridor. However, migration-network connectivity and the impacts of site loss are not completely understood....
Article
Full-text available
Migratory birds rely on a habitat network along their migration routes by temporarily occupying stopover sites between breeding and non‐breeding grounds. Removal or degradation of stopover sites in a network might impede movement, and thereby reduce migration success and survival. The extent to which the breakdown of migration networks, due to chan...
Article
Studies on the highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) H5N1 suggest that wild bird migration may facilitate its long‐distance spread, yet the role of wild bird community composition in its transmission risk remains poorly understood. Furthermore, most studies on the diversity–disease relationship focused on host species diversity without consideri...
Article
Full-text available
1.Host species diversity can affect disease risk, but the precise nature of this effect is disputed. To date, most studies on the diversity‐disease relationships have focused on host species richness and single diseases, ignoring phylogenetic diversity and disease richness. 2.We first evaluated the effects of wildlife assemblage variables (i.e., sp...
Article
Full-text available
Spatial variation in habitat riskiness has a major influence on the predator–prey space race. However, the outcome of this race can be modulated if prey shares enemies with fellow prey (i.e., another prey species). Sharing of natural enemies may result in apparent competition, and its implications for prey space use remain poorly studied. Our objec...
Article
Full-text available
The major histocompatibility complex (MHC) is a highly polymorphic and polygenic genomic region that plays a crucial role in immune-related diseases. Given the need for comparative studies on the variability of immunologically important genes among wild populations and species, we investigated the allelic variation of MHC class II DRB among three c...
Article
Full-text available
Context Migratory species’ resilience to landscape changes depends on spatial patterns of habitat degradation in relation to their migratory movements, such as the distance between breeding and non-breeding areas, and the location and width of migration corridors. Objectives We investigated to what extent the impact of habitat degradation depended...
Article
Full-text available
Movement strategies of animals have been well studied as a function of ecological drivers (e.g., forage selection and avoiding predation) rather than physiological requirements (e.g., thermoregulation). Thermal stress is a major concern for large mammals, especially for savanna elephants (Loxodonta africana), which have amongst the greatest challen...
Book
Domestic and wild large mammalian herbivores occur on every continent except Antarctica. Through their browsing and grazing, they affect the structure and distribution not only of vegetation, but also of associated fauna. Consequently, the interactions between management practices and herbivore populations influence the biodiversity, structure and...
Article
Full-text available
Asian elephants around Bardiya National Park (lowland Nepal) regularly raid crops in the park’s buffer zone and occasionally kill people. Retaliatory killing has been absent till now but emotions run high, and people requested a fence or a concrete wall. We designed an electric fence that allows people and livestock to pass freely but stops elephan...
Article
Full-text available
The major histocompatibility complex (MHC) is a highly polymorphic and polygenic genomic region that plays a crucial role in immune-related diseases. Given the need for comparative studies on the variability of immunologically important genes among wild populations and species, we investigated the allelic variation of MHC class II DRB among three c...
Article
1.Changes in savanna tree species composition, both within landscapes and across climatic gradients, suggest that species differ in their ability to utilise resources and cope with grass competition. Linking trait variation among species to their relative performance under resource limitation and competition treatments could provide mechanistic und...
Article
Full-text available
Water is a scarce resource in semi-arid savannas where over half of the African elephants (Loxodonta africana) populations occur and may therefore influence their movement pattern. A random search is expected for an animal with no information on the location of the target resource, else, a direction-oriented walk is expected. We hypothesized that e...
Article
1.Nutrients derived from the carcasses of Pacific salmon have been shown to have wide‐ranging effects on riparian systems. These include changes in community species composition and an increase in leaf nitrogen concentration, with the latter effect pronounced in the nitriphilic shrub Rubus spectabilis (salmonberry). Experimental work with other spe...
Article
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During times of high activity by predators and competitors, herbivores may be forced to forage in patches of low‐quality food. However, the relative importance in determining where and what herbivores forage still remains unclear, especially for small‐ and intermediate‐sized herbivores. Our objective was to test the relative importance of predator...
Article
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Continuing declines in abundance of many waterbird species on wetland ecosystems require explanations to support effective management interventions. We used 6 year survey data from Shengjin Lake National Nature Reserve in the Yangtze River Floodplain, China, to study the effects of ecological and anthropogenic variables as determinants of waterbird...
Article
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Motivation: The BioTIME database contains raw data on species identities and abundances in ecological assemblages through time. These data enable users to calculate temporal trends in biodiversity within and amongst assemblages using a broad range of metrics. BioTIME is being developed as a community led open-source database of biodiversity time se...
Article
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East Asian migratory waterfowl have greatly declined since the 1950s, especially the populations that winter in China. Conservation is severely hampered by the lack of primary information about migration patterns and stopover sites. This study utilizes satellite tracking techniques and advanced spatial analyses to investigate spring migration of th...