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Abstract

Domestic dogs (Canis familiaris) have a near-global distribution. They range from being feral and free-ranging to owned and completely dependent on humans. All types of domestic dogs can interact with wildlife and have severe negative impacts on biodiversity. Here, we use IUCN Red List data to quantify the number of threatened species negatively impacted by dogs, assess the prevalence of different types of dog impact, and identify regional hotspots containing high numbers of impacted species. Using this information, we highlight key research and management gaps and priorities. Domestic dogs have contributed to 11 vertebrate extinctions and are a known or potential threat to at least 188 threatened species worldwide. These estimates are greater than those reported by previous assessments, but are probably conservative due to biases in the species, regions and types of impacts studied and/or reported. Predation is the most frequently reported impact, followed by disturbance, disease transmission, competition, and hybridisation. Regions with the most species impacted are: South-east Asia, Central America and the Caribbean, South America, Asia (excluding SE), Micro/Mela/Polynesia, and Australia. We propose that the impacts of domestic dogs can be better understood and managed through: taxonomic and spatial prioritisation of research and management; examining potential synergisms between dogs and other threatening processes; strategic engagement with animal welfare and human health campaigns; community engagement and education; and mitigating anthropogenic effects such as resource subsidies. Such actions are essential for threatened species persistence, especially given that human and dog populations are expected to increase both numerically and geographically in the coming decades.

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... Additionally, a consistently high density of dogs can prevent the recovery of declining or fragmented prey populations (Banks & Bryant, 2007). Predation events are the most commonly reported impact from domestic dogs, but other impacts also include disturbance, competition, hybridisation, and the transmission of diseases (Doherty et al., 2017). ...
... Of the studies available on domestic dog-wildlife conflict within Southeast Asia (search carried out 20 May 2021 in Web of Science databases and Google Scholar), most refer to the predation of primate species (Riley et al., 2015;Najmuddin et al., 2019) or this conflict was not the primary focus of the study (Yasué et al., 2008;Azhar et al., 2012;Gumert et al., 2013;Ramli & Norazlimi, 2017). Not only is there a regional bias on published studies, Doherty et al. (2017) found a large taxonomic bias towards mammals; Hughes & Macdonald (2013) also found that most studies reviewed focused only on domestic dog interactions with a singular wildlife species. Furthermore, the majority of studies published tend to be opportunistic predation events or collected incidentally from studies targeting different aims (Young et al., 2011). ...
... Threats that were recognised as strongly affecting animal populations were selected as outcomes of the model, and included competition, disturbance, predations, hybridisation, and disease as specified and defined by Doherty et al. (2017). These threats were collated to give the overall perceived risk outcome with a probability assigned to each of the three outcome states: low, medium, and high. ...
Article
The global population of domestic dogs is estimated at 900 million, making them the world’s most abundant carnivore. Southeast Asia is considered extremely vulnerable to wildlife declines linked to free-ranging dogs, yet few studies report specific cases of dog-wildlife interactions in this region. To overcome this lack of data, the perceived risk to bird and mammal species from free-ranging domestic dogs was modelled using Bayesian networks considering the life history traits of each individual species. The spatial distribution of perceived risk across Southeast Asia was then modelled using a Bayesian network incorporating landscape and demographic characteristics. The number of species considered as high perceived risk in the region was over five times that previously reported. Overall, 11% of bird species and 10% of mammal species were classified as at high perceived risk from free-ranging domestic dogs and eight of these species were listed as Critically Endangered or Endangered by the IUCN Redlist. Furthermore, 50% of mainland Southeast Asia was predicted to be of high perceived risk from free-ranging domestic dogs with only 9% of the region considered as low perceived risk. When empirical data is lacking on IUCN Redlist assessments, incorporation of single threat models can provide missing information critical for accurate evaluation. It is recommended that species are re-evaluated considering domestic dogs as a threat and that this study be used as a template to assist in the development of species action plans and to define key areas where dog management needs to be considered. Management practices should be culturally appropriate and overall promote responsible pet ownership.
... Dogs also create additional negative impacts on wildlife, which further threaten conservation efforts. Dogs negatively impact wildlife through competition, disturbance, hybridization, behavioral change, and disease transmission, but predation is the most commonly cited impact (Doherty et al., 2017;Hughes & Macdonald, 2013;Young et al., 2011). ...
... Globally, an estimated 188 threatened species are at increased extinction risk due to dogs, and at least 11 species have been driven to extinction by dogs (Doherty et al., 2017). Zamora-Nasca et al. (2021) found that dogs chased or preyed on a minimum of 80 different species with birds and mammals most commonly targeted. ...
... While all dogs can impact human-wildlife conflict and conservation, here we focus on free-roaming dogs, defined as dogs that are owned and at least partially dependent on humans for food, shelter, and/ or water, yet their movement is not fully restricted. Free-roaming dogs are more likely to contribute to predation as they have unrestricted access to wildlife (Doherty et al., 2017), and this presents the greatest threat in tropical biodiversity hot spots where humans and their dogs are in close contact with numerous vulnerable, threatened wildlife. ...
Article
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en Human–wildlife conflicts are increasing in number and intensity making conflict mitigation and coexistence a top priority for wildlife conservation. Domesticated dogs (Canis lupus familiaris) can mitigate or exacerbate human–wildlife conflict leading to positive and negative impacts on both humans and wildlife. However, the human–dog–wildlife interface is not well understood, particularly in biodiversity hot spots. Madagascar is a tropical biodiversity hot spot with many rare and threatened species of high conservation concern. Here we assess wildlife predation by free-roaming dogs in communities surrounding Andasibe–Mantadia and Ranomafana National Parks in eastern Madagascar using surveys of dog owners living adjacent to protected areas. Nearly half of survey respondents reported that their dog(s) had killed wildlife. Dogs that spent more time away from home, that traveled to the forest more frequently, that had killed domestic livestock, and that were owned for hunting were more likely to have killed wildlife. Dogs that were fed were approximately 20% less likely to have killed wildlife than dogs that were not fed. Keeping dogs restrained more often and providing food are therefore likely to reduce wildlife predation by dogs provided these are socially acceptable options. Additionally, we found spatial variation in wildlife predation by dogs both between and within our two study regions. These results can help conservation organizations develop targeted, effective interventions appropriately tailored to the local context and prioritize specific areas with higher wildlife predation by dogs. Abstract in French is available with online material. Résumé fr Les conflits homme-faune augmentent en nombre et en intensité, faisant de l’atténuation des conflits et de la coexistence une priorité absolue pour la conservation de la faune sauvage. Les chiens domestiqués (Canis lupus familiaris) peuvent atténuer ou exacerber ces conflits, entraînant des impacts positifs et négatifs à la fois sur les humains et la faune. Cependant, l’interface homme-chien-faune n’est pas bien comprise, en particulier dans les zones haut lieu de la biodiversité. Madagascar est un hotspot de biodiversité tropicale avec de nombreuses espèces rares et menacées qui sont de grande préoccupation pour la conservation. Ici, nous évaluons la prédation de la faune par les chiens en liberté dans les communautés entourant les parcs nationaux d’Andasibe-Mantadia et de Ranomafana dans l’est de Madagascar par le biais d’enquêtes auprès de propriétaires de chiens vivant à proximité des aires protégées. Près de la moitié des répondants au questionnaire ont déclaré que leur(s) chien(s) avaient tué des animaux sauvages. Les chiens qui passaient plus de temps loin de chez eux, qui se rendaient plus fréquemment dans la forêt, qui tuaient des animaux domestiques et qui étaient possédés pour la chasse étaient plus susceptibles d’avoir tué des animaux sauvages. Les chiens qui ont été nourris étaient environ 20% moins susceptibles d’avoir tué des animaux sauvages que les chiens qui n’ont pas été nourris. Garder les chiens en clôture plus souvent et fournir de la nourriture sont donc susceptibles de réduire la prédation de la faune par les chiens à condition que ce soient des options socialement acceptables. De plus, nous avons trouvé une variation spatiale de la prédation de la faune par les chiens à la fois entre et au sein de nos deux régions d’étude. Ces résultats peuvent aider les organismes de conservation à élaborer des interventions ciblées et efficaces adaptées au contexte local et à prioriser des zones particulières où la prédation par les chiens est plus élevée.
... The recent mechanisms which have been investigated are on other aspects, or "nonlethal" effects, of the question at hand. It has been argued that the predator-specific landscape of fear and resource sharing are built on spatial range use [4] . ...
... The unintended effects of predators on subordinate trophic levels, mediated by fear in prey, have come to be known as trait mediated indirect relations, or behaviorally mediated trophic cascades [16] . Numerous experiments have since concluded that trait-mediated relations can be stronger drivers of food web dynamics than density-mediated effects [4] . These fear-driven relations play out over landscapes where prey sensitivity of risk is heterogeneous, and in turn, prey behaviors drive the shapes of spatial heterogeneity in species spreading through trophic levels. ...
... Assessments of global dog abundance are at about 500 million, with features such as geography, climate, accessibility of food and housing prompting local abundance [2] .A study conducted by [4] , the global impacts of domestic dogs on threatened vertebrates and they revealed that domestic dogs can damagingly effect wildlife through direct predation fear-mediated behavioral variations (i.e. 'Risk effects') competition, harassment, hybridization, disease transmission and decreasing these influences is a global conservation matter. ...
Thesis
Full-text available
The nocturnal activities of animals are influenced by the brightness of the moon in different moon phases. Further, behaviour of prey animals, and also density, may fluctuate in response to predators through both lethal effects and non-lethal (fear) effects. As we understand, wildlife may experience fear from a range of predators, including large carnivores, mesopredators, domestic dogs and humans, the latter being regarded as a super predator. In such landscapes with the occurrence of predators, the prey is likely to be more alert in order to lower the danger of being killed. Further, flight response is an appropriate, recognised and measurable indicator (as flight initiation distance, FID) of fear effects in terrestrial animals. In this research, our specific aims were: 1) to investigate the effects of moonlight on activity patterns and the interactions between a large carnivore (North China leopard Panthera pardus japonensis) and their prey; 2) to analyse the den-site selection by the mesopredator, red fox (Vulpes vulpes montana) at multiple scales in a patchy human-dominated landscape; 3) to describe the habitat factors and predator density effects on the spatial abundance of cape hare (Lepus capensis) distribution; 4) to explore the increased FID in golden marmots (Marmota caudata aurea) in response to domestic dogs, and; 5) to understand how the occurrence of conspecifics in the neighboring space may influence FID in cape hare under the effect of human disturbance. These collective works contributed to the understanding of fear ecology and their implications for predator-prey interactions in China and Pakistan. We used camera-traps to investigate the first aim; for the remaining four objectives, we laid out transect lines in different habitats to explore how the fear effects stimulated by humans and predators influence other mammals. A total of 102 camera locations operated between March 2017-May 2019 and circadian activities of each species was analyzed by using temporalniche overlap model, as well as Generalized Linear Mixed Effects Model (GLMM) to link habitat structures with leopards and prey species. We derived Resource Selection Functions (RSFs) to predict the potential distribution of red fox dens at three spatial scales. We used the standard line transect distance sampling method to calculate the seasonal density of hare and comparative density of red fox. A traditional live-trapping protocol was used to capture a sample of golden marmots at the four colonies. Lastly, we used human stimuli at the start of each sampling period for the cape hare investigation to link with disturbances and flight response. The main results of this study are the following: (1) North China leopard exhibited an irregular activity pattern, wild boar (Sus scrofa) indicated lunar phobic behaviour and avoided leopard, and roe deer (Capreolus pygargus) were lunar philic. Tolai hare (Lepus tolai) showed lunar phobic behavior. The nocturnal activities of leopards, roe deer and tolai hare were positively related. The occurrence of leopard day vs. night activity during four different lunar phases were exhibited a preference with distance to deciduous forest and secondary roads, while avoided to lower elevations. Roe deer showed a preference to secondary roads. Wild boar displayed avoidance of intermediate elevation. Tolai hare indicated preference to grassland. Further, cloud cover, moonlight risk index (MRI), humans and season had diverse effects on leopard and prey interactions. (2) We found that for red fox den occurrence, elevation was the most significant covariate at landscapes scale, and distance to forest had negative effect; at patch scale, distance to forests were negatively correlated with number of dens and positively linked to shrubs. Furthermore, at microhabitat scale, den occurrence was negatively linked with hiding cover and positively associated with tree density and anthropogenic features – den occurrence was negatively related with distance to roads and positively correlated with Indian pika (Ochotona roylei)burrow existence. We found that den entrance dimensions were larger for natal dens than resting dens. (3) We identified that, the population density of hare was highest in bare areas and the lowest in mixed plantations. In summer, we found a positive correlation between hare and red fox density in a bare area, and in winter, in shrubs land. The relative density of red fox was lowest in subalpine habitat. We found that hare pellet indices were positively connected with indices of herbs in plantation forest, shrubs in mixed forest, trees in two selected habitat sites, and negatively linked to cultivated land, roads, and rivers in mixed and streams in bare areas. (4) We measured FID in 72 Golden marmots from four colonies in the Karakoram Range, Pakistan. We found that the domestic dog (Canis familiaris) caused greater FID than pedestrian alone, and adult marmots nearer to roads showed greater FID. However, marmot age and colony substrate had more marked influences on FID, which was also greater at lower elevations where there were clusters of human settlements and livestock pastures. (5) Our results showed that foraging hares have smaller FIDs than vigilant ones. Social animals reduced FID of the focal hare due to a mutual vigilance, while a solitary animal had greater FID due to less cooperative defense for predator detection. This research has demonstrated that fear effects exist in human-dominated landscapes, and that environmental factors can drive temporal activities of predator-prey interactions which are linked with lunar phase. It also showed that human disturbances, such as domestic dogs, influenced the core activity zones of burrowing herbivores. The studies also show the scale of fear and provide a superior chance to recognize the biological significance of fear ecology and its application for future wildlife conservation in human-dominated landscapes.
... They also function as reservoirs of diseases (Morey 1994, Vanak andGompper 2009). Domestic dogs (Canis familiaris) have a near-global distribution and its close nexus with humans have made them equally prevalent in urban and peri-urban mosaics around the world (Doherty et al. 2017). Presently, 55% of the human population worldwide is known to live in urban areas, and this projection is expected to increase to 68% by the year 2050, leading to the further expansion of urban and peri-urban spaces (United Nations 2018). ...
... The domestic dog range from being domestic to free-ranging (unsupervised domestic dogs, or stray or street dogs) and even completely feral (Daniels and Bekoff 1989;Home et al. 2017), owing to their interactions with humans. Irrespective of their degree of association with humans domestic dogs are known to have severe negative impacts on biodiversity and public health (Doherty et al. 2017;Bradley and Altizer 2007) Peri-urban areas are considered as a transition zone ranging within the gradient of urban to rural spaces (Simon 2006). Rapid urbanization, and thus encroachment into rural spaces, is also driving the increase of peri-urban spaces. ...
... Besides public health-related concerns, domestic dogs have contributed to the extinction of 11 vertebrate species and are known to be a potential threat to 188 threatened species worldwide (Doherty et al. 2017). These negative impacts get Research has shown that the extent of urbanization can influence road networks and resource availability, which in turn could affect the distribution and abundance of free ranging dogs (Doherty et al. 2017). ...
Thesis
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Owing to rapid urbanization, free-ranging dogs have been known to have caused significant public health issues globally. India currently harbours over 17 million free-ranging dogs, spanning across the mosaics of urban, peri-urban, and rural regions of India. Free-ranging dogs are reservoirs of diseases, and although, India has pledged to launch a mass vaccination program against them, insufficient information is available on the distribution and demographics of dog population within urban and peri-urban regions of India. Through this study, I make an effort to understand the ecology of free-ranging dogs in a peri-urban landscape by examining their spatial and temporal distribution patterns. The study was conducted in a 4km 2 area around Sompura Gate, one of the most rapidly growing, peri-urban regions in the outskirts of Bangalore. My analysis showed that within the study area the dog population was closed during the sampling period. The estimated population of FRDs around Sompura Gate was found to be 262 ± 12.76 and 322 ±15.67 in the summer and winter seasons, respectively. Sex ratios were found to be 1.151 (m:f) and 1.3687 for the summer and winter seasons, respectively. I performed a test for complete spatial randomness (CSR) and determined that dog distribution (inferred from sightings) was highly clustered. On generating kernel density maps, I found that the clustering of the dogs appeared to be associated with different sources of organic food. By plotting the number of dog sightings per km 2 as a function of Euclidean distance from various resource types, I found that dogs had a greater preference towards eateries (bakeries and food shops) compared to garbage dumps and more unreliable food sources and this was determined by plotting the density of dogs with respect to the absolute distance of the dogs from the different resources.
... Free-ranging domestic dogs (Canis familiaris; hereafter "dogs") are commonly associated with anthropogenic habitats and can further complicate competition dynamics among coyotes and foxes (Doherty et al., 2017). As subsidized predators, dogs can occur at high densities facilitating disease transmission to native canids (Acosta-Jamett et al., 2011;Kat et al., 1995), or interfere with native canids by inducing fear-mediated or aggressive behavior (Zapata-Ríos & Branch, 2016). ...
... While gray foxes occurred at higher rates when dogs were also present, diel activity patterns differed substantially, and gray fox detectability was lower when dogs were present indicating either avoidance (including suppression of activity) or lower gray fox abundance in the areas where they cooccur with dogs (Royle & Nichols, 2003). Whether through disease transmission or increased vigilance reducing individual fitness, either interaction could contribute to a population decline (Doherty et al., 2017;Sheriff et al., 2009). However, the greater consequence could be that the high occurrence of dogs in the study area escalates competitive interactions among native canids. ...
Article
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Species coexistence is governed by availability of resources and intraguild interactions including strategies to reduce ecological overlap. Gray foxes are dietary generalist mesopredators expected to benefit from anthropogenic disturbance, but populations have declined across the midwestern USA, including severe local extirpation rates coinciding with high coyote and domestic dog occurrence and low red fox occurrence. We used data from a large-scale camera trap survey in southern Illinois, USA to quantify intraguild spatial and temporal interactions among the canid guild including domestic dogs. We used a two-species co-occurrence model to make pairwise assessments of conditional occupancy and detection rates. We also estimated temporal activity overlap among species and fit a fixed-effects hierarchical community occupancy model with the four canid species. We partitioned the posterior distributions to compare gray fox occupancy probabilities conditional on estimated state of combinations of other species to assess support for hypothesized interactions. We found no evidence of broadscale avoidance among native canids and conclude that spatial and temporal segregation were limited by ubiquitous human disturbance. Mean guild richness was two canid species at a site and gray fox occupancy was greater when any combination of sympatric canids was also present, setting the stage for competitive exclusion over time. Domestic dogs may amplify competitive interactions by increasing canid guild size to the detriment of gray foxes. Our results suggest that while human activities can benefit some mesopredators, other species such as gray foxes may serve as bellwethers for habitat degradation with trophic downgrading and continued anthropogenic homogenization.
... As free-roaming dogs thrive and wildlife-domestic conflict is becoming more frequent worldwide, demographic studies and social dimensions approaches should be taken into account in conservation and management programs (Hughes and MacDonald 2013;Doherty et al. 2017). ...
... Here we describe some useful outcomes that emerged from this study regarding high dog densities based on DOHH, and the relationship with husbandry practices. As the landscapes become more human dominated, freeroaming dogs and the consequent negative interactions with wildlife have emerged as a challenge (Doherty et al. 2017). Mainly because dogs are popular pets in most parts of the world, the percentage of dog-owning households varies significantly among countries, with studies reporting from 13 to 85% (Orihuela and Solano 1995;Gsell et al. 2012). ...
Article
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Dogs have been recognized as a conservation concern for wildlife. Increasing dog populations have led to a rise in health and ecological problems for humans and wildlife. Dog demography and husbandry practices of dog ownership are key factors for planning population and disease management programs. We conducted a cross-sectional dog demography study in five towns near remnant patches of forest in Central Mexico. The results from surveys applied to 267 households showed high dog ownership (83%). The human dog ratio was 2:1, 2.3 ± SE 1.5 dogs per dog owning household. Mean fecundity rate was 0.8 ± 0.5, with only 11% of the dogs sterilized. Mortality rate was higher in pups than dogs surpassing the year (1.3 vs. 0.12). Overall, vaccination coverage against rabies was higher (81%) than against distemper virus and canine parvovirus (26%). Average dog density for all sites was 1,777 dogs/km². Free-roaming was allowed to 82% of the dogs. Regarding wildlife interactions, 64% of owners have observed wildlife near their houses and 23% have observed a negative interaction, such as predation or chasing of dogs over native fauna. The high densities and high rates of free-roaming dogs found in the study suggest that is likely that dogs harass, compete or predate on wildlife. A high density of dogs and the low vaccination coverage against some pathogens of animal health concern, increases the risk of cross-species transmission between domestic and wild carnivores. Awareness-raising campaigns for dog owners and a dog population management program are required.
... Human presence can make wild animals experience intense fear [4], so animals may adjust their movement patterns to avoid contact with human beings [2]. Grazing [5] and companion animals such as dogs and cats [6,7] also can affect wildlife movement. As with natural predator-prey systems, such risks have nonlethal effects on the physiology and fitness of wildlife [8,9]. ...
... Movement peaks of male Reeves's Pheasants were timed to avoid contact with human beings, which is consistent with existing findings [29], and similar to the behaviors of other wild animals under human disturbance [3]. Previous studies have pointed out that livestock can have a strong impact on the movement patterns of wild animals [6,7]. However, we did not find that males avoided contact with livestock obviously, which is consistent with previous findings in the region [29]. ...
Article
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Human disturbance has a strong impact on the movement of wild animals. However, it remains unclear how the movement patterns of the Reeves's Pheasant (Syrmaticus reevesii) respond to human disturbance in human-dominated landscapes. We tracked the movement of 40 adult individual Reeves's Pheasants during the breeding season, and used the dynamic Brownian bridge motion model and kernel density estimation to analyze the diurnal movement patterns of Reeves's Pheasants and their response to human presence. We analyzed the paths of Reeves's Pheasants based on a partial least squares path model, considering habitat conditions, body characteristics, and reproductive behaviors. We found that males had two clear diurnal movement peaks, whereas reproductive and non-reproductive females did not show such movement peaks. Males shifted their movement peaks to earlier times in the day to avoid the presence peaks of humans. The correlation between human-modified habitat and the movement intensity of Reeves's Pheasant differed between sexes. For males, the distance to forest paths had a positive correlation with their movement intensity through affecting body conditions. For females, the distance to forest paths and farmland had a negative correlation with their movement intensity through affecting habitat conditions and reproductive behaviors. Our study provides a scientific basis for the protection of the Reeves's Pheasant and other related terrestrial forest-dwelling birds.
... Therefore, dogs are a widespread invasive species that can commonly exploit fragmented landscapes as they more easily permeate from areas of human residence (Oehler and Litvaitis 1996;Broadbent et al. 2008;Paschoal et al. 2018). Dogs commonly harass and kill native carnivores, compete for prey species, and transmit pathogens to wild populations (Laurenson et al. 1998;Doherty et al. 2017). These disturbances can alter activity patterns and reduce relative abundance of native carnivores. ...
... The management of domestic animals can be a source of intense debate, especially in regards to animals typically considered as pets(Wald et al. 2013). The impacts of dogs on wildlife is underestimated; conservation practitioners can learn from the intense controversy generated by the management of feral cats by involving local stakeholders, and by bringing a strong understanding of what factors drive the impacts of dogs(Loyd and Miller 2010;Doherty et al. 2017). ...
Thesis
Anthropogenic habitat destruction is one of the major causes of biodiversity loss, driving species declines across the planet. The resultant human-modified landscapes are not detrimental for all species. Some species such as small to medium-sized habitat generalist carnivores (hereafter referred to as ‘mesocarnivores’) are able to thrive because of the exclusion of natural enemies and anthropogenic sources of food. With the benefits of human-modified landscapes come novel threats, such as increased exposure to hunting and introduced antagonists. Mesocarnivores may respond to these threats with changes in space and time use, with potential consequences for species interactions. In this dissertation, I examine how drivers of mesocarnivore space and time use align with physical characteristics of the human-modified landscape and associated factors, and what implications these results have for interactions between native species. I do this using empirical work across two temperate systems (Chapters II, III, and IV), and a simulation model (Chapter V).
... Previous research gave conflicting results because some studies found high spatial overlap between both leopard cat species and large felids (Sunarto et al. 2015;Kyaw et al. 2021), whereas another study found that leopard cats avoided large felids (Vitekere et al. 2020); no studies have investigated the interactions of dholes and leopard cats. Also, domestic dogs (Canis familiaris) are sometimes abundant within protected areas of Southeast Asia, and they can have severe negative impacts on wildlife (Hughes and Macdonald 2013;Doherty et al. 2017;Gompper 2021). Therefore, domestic dogs probably also prey on leopard cats and they might have negative impacts on their populations. ...
... Thus, domestic dogs likely negatively impact numerous other species inside the protected areas, especially in SWS where dogs were detected at high frequencies. Domestic dogs pose a threat to nearly 200 globally threatened species worldwide, and they have contributed to the extinctions of 11 vertebrates via depredations, disease transmission, competition, and hybridization (Doherty et al. 2017). Given the high rates of dog detections on our study sites, we recommend further research on domestic dogs and their impacts on wildlife within protected areas in Cambodia (Hughes and Macdonald 2013;Hughes et al. 2017). ...
Article
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The leopard cat ( Prionailurus bengalensis ) is the most common wild felid in Southeast Asia, yet little is known about the factors that affect their population density and occupancy in natural habitats. Although leopard cats are highly adaptable and reportedly can attain high densities in human-modified habitats, it is not clear which natural habitat is optimal for the species. Also, this felid has been preyed upon by large carnivores in Southeast Asia, yet the intra-guild effects of large carnivore presence on leopard cats are almost unknown. To shed light on these fundamental questions, we used data from camera trap surveys for felids to determine the leopard cat densities in three different forest types within Cambodia: continuous evergreen, mosaic dominated by evergreen (hereafter evergreen mosaic), and mosaic dominated by open dry deciduous forests (hereafter DDF mosaic). We also conducted occupancy analyses to evaluate the interactions of the leopard cats with three large carnivores: leopards ( Panthera pardus ), dholes ( Cuon alpinus ), and domestic dogs ( Canis familiaris ). The estimated density (individuals/100 km ² ± SE) was highest in the continuous evergreen (27.83 ± 7.68), followed by evergreen mosaic (22.06 ± 5.35) and DDF mosaic (13.53 ± 3.23). Densities in all three forest types were relatively high compared to previous studies. Domestic dogs were detected on all 3 sites, and leopards and dholes had sufficient records on only one site each. The occupancy probability of leopard cats was not affected by the presence or absence of any large carnivore, indicating that large carnivores and leopard cats occurred independently of each other. Our findings support the claim that leopard cats are habitat generalists, but we show that evergreen forest is the optimum natural habitat for this species in the region. The DDF mosaic appears to sustain lower densities of leopard cats, probably due to the harsh dry season and wildfires that led to reduced prey base, although this generalist felid was still able to occupy DDF in relatively moderate numbers. Overall, the adaptability of leopard cats to various forest types, and lack of negative interaction with large carnivores, helps to explain why this species is the most common and widespread felid in Southeast Asia.
... However, interactions, such as mutualism, competition, predation and pathogenicity, may be disturbed by non-native species that over-exploit the niches, leading to changes in native populations. This theory is supported by many studies (see Mori et al. 2019) that have shown that invasive species may exert very high predatory pressure on native fauna (Loss et al., 2013;Doherty et al., 2017a;Loss and Marra 2017), disease transmission (Hinshaw et al., 1978), as well as hybridisation between invasive and native species (Davison et al., 1999;Randi et al., 2001;Bassi et al., 2017). In consequence, a biological invasion may result in local extinction events of wild fauna (Malo et al., 2011). ...
... At the continental scale, native wildlife has been co-evolving with feral cats for millennia (Doherty et al., 2017a;Ottoni et al., 2017), and potential prey species should be resistant to the interference of cat populations (Fitzgerald, 1988;Fitzgerald andTurner, 2000, Gross, 2020;Ottoni and Neer, 2020). However, in recent years a rapid increase in the population size of cats has been observed, and it is estimated to have doubled in France between 1990and 2015(FACCO, 2017, and increased by 200,000 in Belgium between (SPF Economie, 2016. ...
Article
Ecological interactions between native species are often disturbed by invasive species. However, to understand their impact on wild native animal populations on a country scale it is necessary to develop a predictive model. Therefore, I followed the species density distribution modelling approach to explore how feral domestic cats (Felis catus) along with environmental predictors determined densities of two bird species, the Yellowhammer (Emberiza citrinella) and the Yellow Wagtail (Motacilla flava) on the whole area of Poland. As a modelling method, I used the Generalised Additive Model to develop two models for each of the two bird species: The first with the feral cat density as an additional predictor, and the second without it. As a result, I demonstrated the negative impact of cat density on native bird populations, illustrated by reduced density of the two studied species in their preferred habitats, in which cats reached a high density. Although it cannot be explicitly asserted that cats lead to a local extinction of the two bird species, these predators should not be underestimated. In many locations feral populations are fed with new individuals, and they do not follow the same internal mechanisms regulating their population as the native bird fauna. Thus, on a large spatial scale species density distribution models of birds should include cats’ population size as an additional predictor when this predator's environmental preferences overlap with preferences of the studied target groups.
... This includes both owned and unowned dogs. The free-roaming dog population can present issues in terms of a1111111111 a1111111111 a1111111111 a1111111111 a1111111111 public health [3][4][5], conservation of wildlife [6], livestock predation [7,8], and dog welfare [9,10]. Effective management of the free-roaming dog population is a primary concern of government agencies, animal welfare organisations, and public health and conservation researchers [11]. ...
... Changes in free-roaming dog population size are important indicators of the effectiveness of dog population management. Reducing population size and stabilising population turnover can lead to reductions in risks to public health [12,13], conservation of wildlife [6], and dog welfare [9,14,15]. ...
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Changes in free-roaming dog population size are important indicators of the effectiveness of dog population management. Assessing the effectiveness of different management methods also requires estimating the processes that change population size, such as the rates of recruitment into and removal from a population. This is one of the first studies to quantify the size, rates of recruitment and removal, and health and welfare status of free-roaming dog populations in Europe. We determined the size, dynamics, and health status of free-roaming dog populations in Pescara, Italy, and Lviv, Ukraine, over a 15-month study period. Both study populations had ongoing dog population management through catch-neuter-release and sheltering programmes. Average monthly apparent survival probability was 0.93 (95% CI 0.81–1.00) in Pescara and 0.93 (95% CI 0.84–0.99) in Lviv. An average of 7 dogs km ⁻² were observed in Pescara and 40 dogs km ⁻² in Lviv. Per capita entry probabilities varied between 0.09 and 0.20 in Pescara, and 0.12 and 0.42 in Lviv. In Lviv, detection probability was lower on weekdays (odds ratio: 0.74, 95% CI 0.53–0.96) and higher on market days (odds ratio: 2.58, 95% CI 1.28–4.14), and apparent survival probability was lower in males (odds ratio: 0.25, 95% CI 0.03–0.59). Few juveniles were observed in the study populations, indicating that recruitment may be occurring by movement between dog subpopulations (e.g. from local owned or neighbouring free-roaming dog populations), with important consequences for population control. This study provides important data for planning effective dog population management and for informing population and infectious disease modelling.
... Human activity can increase predator activity in urban areas by supporting introduced predators, including pet dogs (Canis familiaris) and domestic cats (Felis catus; Woods et al., 2003;Morgan et al., 2009;Young et al., 2011;Doherty et al., 2017). Human activity can also increase native predator activity via attraction to supplementary food sources , and to the prey utilizing urban habitats (Fleming and Bateman, 2018). ...
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Human activity can impose additional stressors to wildlife, both directly and indirectly, including through the introduction of predators and influences on native predators. As urban and adjacent environments are becoming increasingly valuable habitat for wildlife, it is important to understand how susceptible taxa, like small prey animals, persist in urban environments under such additional stressors. Here, in order to determine how small prey animals’ foraging patterns change in response to habitat components and distances to predators and human disturbances, we used filmed giving-up density (GUD) trials under natural conditions along an urban disturbance gradient. We then ran further GUD trials with the addition of experimentally introduced stressors of: the odors of domestic cat ( Felis catus )/red fox ( Vulpes vulpes ) as predator cues, light and sound as human disturbance cues, and their combinations. Small mammals were mostly observed foraging in the GUD trials, and to a lesser degree birds. Animals responded to proximity to predators and human disturbances when foraging under natural conditions, and used habitat components differently based on these distances. Along the urban disturbance gradient situation-specific responses were evident and differed under natural conditions compared to additional stressor conditions. The combined predator with human disturbance treatments resulted in responses of higher perceived risk at environments further from houses. Animals at the urban-edge environment foraged more across the whole site under the additional stressor conditions, but under natural conditions perceived less risk when foraging near predators and further from human disturbance (houses). Contrastingly, at the environments further from houses, foraging near human disturbance (paths/roads) when close to a predator was perceived as lower risk, but when foraging under introduced stressor conditions these disturbances were perceived as high risk. We propose that sensory and behavioral mechanisms, and stress exposure best explain our findings. Our results indicate that habitat components could be managed to reduce the impacts of high predation pressure and human activity in disturbed environments.
... Due to current deforestation and hunting pressure, M. rufina is restricted to remnant vegetation patches with a downward population trend. This population downsizing has led the species to be classified as vulnerable by the IUCN (D. Lizcano & Alvarez, 2015;Lizcano et al., 2010), with the aggravating factor of depredation by feral dogs (Díaz et al., 2020;Doherty et al., 2017;Zapata-Ríos & Branch, 2016). ...
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The brocket deer (Genus Mazama) is a highly diverse cervid group distributed from Mexico to Argentina, with a downward population trend. However, literature on the basic reproductive biology of the genus is scarce. This work aimed to study biometric, histological and stereological aspects of the testes of Dwarf Red Brocket (Mazama rufina). Testes from free-ranging adult brockets (n = 3) were retrieved from necropsies. Testes were histologically processed. From histological images, several stereological parameters were estimated, and seminiferous epithelium cycle morphology was described. Testes volumes were between 8.2 and 18.4 ml and weights from 8.3 to 19.4 g. Gonadosomatic index (% paired-testes weight to body weight) went from 0.17 to 0.64. The tubular cross-sectional diameter was 179.8 ± 2.8 µm. Estimated volume densities for parenchyma and interstitium were 78.8% and 21.2% respectively. There were (in millions/ml) 96.0 ± 13.1 germ cells and 37.7 ± 6.0 somatic cells. Specific cell densities were (all expressed in millions/ml) as follows: spermatogonia 13.1 ± 4.2; primary spermatocytes 43.1 ± 5.0; round spermatids 36.8 ± 8.0 (lower density near the caudal pole, p < 0.01); sustentacular (Sertoli) cells 16.8 ± 4.1 and interstitial endocrine (Leydig) cells 17.4 ± 3.4. Sertoli cell index (germ cells per Sertoli cell) was 6.72. Eight stages of the cycle were described, and frequencies estimated, resembling those of goats. M. rufina adult testis anatomy is similar to that of other cervids and domestic ruminants, with an apparently lower spermatogenic efficiency. This work is a first approximation to the physiology of the testis of M. rufina. Basic knowledge of the reproductive physiology of vulnerable species may allow biotechnological approaches for the restitution of animal populations.
... They can transmit diseases currently exotic to Australia such as canine rabies, which affects most mammals (Tang et al., 2005;Totton et al., 2010), and can harass, injure and kill wildlife (Hughes and Macdonald, 2013;Taborsky, 1988) and livestock (Ritchie et al., 2014). Globally, free-roaming dogs have also contributed to the extinction of 11 vertebrate species and have been identified as a causal factor in the demise of at least 188 threatened species (Doherty et al., 2017). ...
Article
Dogs are ubiquitous and strongly associated with human communities, but many roam freely, away from the owners' property and control. Free-roaming owned dogs can pose risks through disease transmission to and from other dogs, attacking domestic animals, fauna or humans, and involvement in road accidents. However, little research has focused on understanding their movement ecology, thereby hindering the development of effective management plans. We modified store-bought GPS collars and used them to track a sample of 43 free-roaming owned dogs from peri-urban sites in north-east New South Wales and south-east Queensland, Australia. Our aim was to quantify the activity ranges of owned dogs and the distances they travelled, whether free-roaming or accompanying people, and to identify some associated factors. The total activity ranges of our sample of dogs were variable (0.80-1776.20 ha), and the mean daily activity range of collared dogs was relatively large (7.23 ± 11.99 ha), with mean daily accumulated distances travelled ranging from 0.25 to 4.81 km (mean = 1.95 ± 1.10 km). The dogs exhibited two temporal activity peaks, one between 0700 and 1000 and a second between 1600 and 1900 hrs. Most human-mediated dog movements were short in duration, ranging from 45 min to 6 h, with dogs moving an average of 48.60 ± 64.00 km, but up to 329.00 km from their home. The large activity ranges and relatively long movements in this sample of free-roaming owned dogs suggests they have potential to contribute to the spread of exotic and endemic zoonotic and canid diseases in the peri-urban coastal regions of eastern Australia. The baseline information collected here is crucial to our understanding of disease transmission among peri-urban dogs, and modelling spread within and between communities. Additionally, it provides valuable information for authorities seeking to improve management of free-roaming owned dogs.
... There is substantial evidence that free-ranging and feral dogs can have negative effects on wildlife populations (J. Hughes & Macdonald, 2013;Young et al., 2011), and these effects are particularly severe in SEA (Doherty et al., 2017). Domestic dogs are commonly used by local communities in Cambodia for hunting inside PAs (Coad, Lim, & Nuon, 2019;Ibbett et al., 2020). ...
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Long-term monitoring of biodiversity in protected areas (PAs) is critical to assess threats, link conservation action to species outcomes, and facilitate improved management. Yet, rigorous longitudinal monitoring within PAs is rare. In Southeast Asia (SEA), there is a paucity of long-term wildlife monitoring within PAs, and many threatened species lack population estimates from anywhere in their range, making global assessments difficult. Here, we present new abundance estimates and population trends for 11 species between 2010 and 2020, and spatial distributions for 7 species, based on long-term line transect distance sampling surveys in Keo Seima Wildlife Sanctuary in Cambodia. These represent the first robust population estimates for four threatened species from anywhere in their range and are among the first long-term wildlife population trend analyses from the entire SEA region. Our study revealed that arboreal primates and green peafowl (Pavo muticus) generally had either stable or increasing population trends, whereas ungulates and semiarboreal primates generally had declining trends. These results suggest that ground-based threats, such as snares and domestic dogs, are having serious negative effects on terrestrial species. These findings have important conservation implications for PAs across SEA that face similar threats yet lack reliable monitoring data.
... there is growing recognition of their ecological role (Doherty et al., 2017). The current global biomass of mammalian domestic livestock and chickens surpasses that of all wild mammals and birds respectively, resulting in significant climatic and ecological impacts ( Bar-On et al., 2018). ...
Article
Domestic animals have immense economic, cultural and practical value, and have played pivotal roles in the development of human civilization. Many domesticates have, among their wild relatives, undomesticated forms representative of their ancestors. Resurgent interest in these ancestral forms has highlighted the unclear genetic status of many, with some threatened with extinction by hybridization with domestic conspecifics. Our aim is to focus attention on the contemporary status of these ancestral forms, by first discussing their scientific, practical and ecological importance; second, outlining the varied impacts of wild-domestic hybridization; and third discussing the challenges and potential resolutions involved in conservation efforts. We highlight the complexity of identifying and conserving ancestral forms, particularly with respect to disentangling patterns of gene flow from domesticates. Comparative behavioural, ecological and genetic studies of ancestral-type, feral and domestic animals should be prioritized to establish the contemporary status of the former. Such baseline information will be fundamental in ensuring successful conservation efforts. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
... Similar to other invasive species, domestic dogs have become an important threat to native biodiversity and a priority for conservation strategies (Bellard et al., 2016;Doherty et al., 2017a; see Aichi Target 9, Convention on Biological Diversity, 2010), particularly in developing countries (e.g., Lessa et al., 2016;Vanak and Gompper, 2010). However, if national-level legislation decides not to deal with dogs impacting wild nature, then local environmental agencies would be precluded from halting dog effects on local fauna. ...
Article
Unlike most feral domestic animals, ranging behavior, diet dependence, and human socialization have been used as criteria to define feral dogs. These criteria can obstruct wildlife conservation if decisions depend on identifying ferality in dogs. We argue that diet dependence and human socialization are unnecessary to define ferality in situations where dogs constitute a threat to wildlife. Human-dependent diet and sociability are not exclusive to house dogs; thus, they do not differentiate ferality with certainty, and they have no established testing methods or thresholds. Most notably, they obstruct management by complicating feral dog identification. As a case study, legislation in Chile surrounding dog management does not recognize the existence of feral dogs and bans the application of lethal methods on dogs. This impairs conservation because the current definition makes it impossible to distinguish if a dog is feral at first sight. This is a problem in the small-scale livestock industry, where goat and sheep losses are mainly caused by dogs. Stakeholders could kill attacking dogs to defend their livestock, risking a lawsuit if those dogs were owned, or continue to lose their livelihood. Neither option benefits livestock owners. To not hinder conservation, we propose feral dogs be defined based only on ownership status, ranging behavior, and location in the context of management, and offer a classification based on these criteria. However, we contend that whether a dog is feral is not important for decision-making. Instead, dogs should be controlled if they are found on any public space unaccompanied by humans.
... Pet cats are strongly linked to human presence, and their presence may therefore represent a factor to account for when studying mesocarnivore interactions in urban areas. Pet cats can indicate gardens with pet food left outside or in the trash, but also represent a disturbance for other wildlife species (Cechetti et al., 2021;Doherty et al., 2017;Medina et al., 2011). ...
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1. Studying species interactions and niche segregation under human pressure provides important insights into species adaptation, community functioning and ecosystem stability. Due to their high plasticity in behaviour and diet, urban mesocarnivores are ideal species for studying community assembly in novel communities. 2. We analysed the spatial and temporal species interactions of an urban mesocarnivore community composed of the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) and the marten (Martes sp.) as native species, the raccoon (Procyon lotor) as invasive species, and the cat (Felis catus) as a domestic species in combination with human disturbance modulated by the SARS‐CoV‐2 lockdown effect that happened while the study was conducted. 3. We analysed camera‐trap data and applied a joint species distribution model to understand not only the environmental variables influencing the detection of mesocarnivores and their use intensity of environmental features but also the species’ co‐occurrences while accounting for environmental variables. We then assessed whether they displayed temporal niche partitioning based on activity analyses, and finally analysed at a smaller temporal scale the time of delay after the detection of another focal species. 4. We found that species were more often detected and displayed a higher use intensity in gardens during the SARS‐CoV‐2 lockdown period, while showing a shorter temporal delay during the same period, meaning a high human‐induced spatio‐temporal overlap. All three wild species spatially co‐occurred within the urban area, with a positive response of raccoons to cats in detection and use intensity, whereas foxes showed a negative trend towards cats. When assessing the temporal partitioning, we found that all wild species showed overlapping nocturnal activities. All species displayed temporal segregation based on temporal delay. According to the temporal delay analyses, cats were the species avoided the most by all wild species. To conclude, we found that although the wild species were positively associated in space, the avoidance occurred at a smaller temporal scale, and human pressure in addition led to high spatio‐temporal overlap. 5. Our study sheds light to the complex patterns underlying the interactions in a mesocarnivore community both spatially and temporally, and the exacerbated effect of human pressure on community dynamics.
... Hence, it can be seen that the uncertainty surrounding the impacts of cats on native wildlife are currently impacting upon the design and implementation of methods to control cats in urban areas (5,23,24). While a few studies have been undertaken to examine the impact of predation by owned cats (25)(26)(27)(28)(29) and owned dogs (28,(30)(31)(32)(33)(34), they have typically examined the impact of predation by these species separately, so the results are not directly comparable between dogs and cats. ...
Article
Concerns about the impact of pet dogs and cats on native wildlife populations have shaped pet control legislation, despite there being scant research of their impact in urban areas. Using an online questionnaire, we obtained data from 662 Australian dog and cat owners who had observed their pets capture prey in the previous 6 months. Of the pets observed to catch prey, dogs caught a median of 2 mammals, 2 birds, 2 reptiles, and 3 amphibians, whereas cats caught a median of 3 mammals, 2 birds, 4 reptiles, and 2 amphibians. Of mammals caught by dogs and cats, 88 and 93%, respectively, were identifiable as introduced mice, rats, and rabbits. Of pets that caught prey, a substantial proportion caught native animals (62% of dogs and 47% of cats). However, median numbers of native animals caught per dog (2) or cat (3) over 6 months were low. Small skinks and lizards comprised the greatest proportion for dogs and cats, but dogs also caught larger native prey (e.g., possums, kangaroos, and wallabies). Most birds caught by dogs and cats were common or introduced (dogs: crested pigeons and lorikeets; cats: noisy miners and rosellas). To design measures that will effectively protect Australia's native wildlife, thorough understanding of the role dogs and cats play in Australian urban ecosystems is required. These findings can inform that understanding, and assist with development of management strategies for urban dogs and cats, and as well as directing resources to efforts that will most protect urban wildlife.
... rural dogs/km 2 in Tanzania, Lembo et al., 2008), outnumbering native carnivores (e.g., 3-85 times more abundant in Brazil, Paschoal et al., 2016). The high densities of dogs, together with their often-unrestricted mobility, explain why domestic dogs are among the group of invasive mammalian predators with the most pervasive impacts on vertebrates (188 spp., Doherty et al., 2017). ...
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Free-ranging owned dogs are a conservation concern worldwide, but knowledge on their movement ecology is only recently increasing. To examine unsupervised dog movements into wilderness, we attached Global Positioning System devices to 33 village and four rural dogs on a sub-Antarctic island in Chile during the four seasons of a year (n = 86115 locations). This corresponded to a quarter of the local free-ranging dog population based on a photographic mark-recapture survey. The largest maximum distance to the owner´s home was 20.4 km. The median home range size ranged between 15.8 (spring) and 24.4 ha (summer), but with great individual variation (1.6 ha - 148.8 km²). Nine individuals had home ranges > 100 ha in at least one seasonal monitoring; seven individuals performed excursions spending 1 - 6 nights in pristine nature, and two individuals accompanied tourists on trekking trips lasting 3 - 6 days. Remarkably; village dogs were quite active at night (40.7% of the locations). Top-ranked habitats in the compositional analysis of habitat use of village dogs were forest and infrastructure. However, coasts were also important at second order and peatbog at third order habitat selection. Our study revealed a high temporal and spatial plasticity of dog movement in sub-Antarctic ecosystems, likely interacting with wildlife. We conclude that future research should address predictors of problematic animals, which have been treated as “outliers” in many studies. In Chile, the control of legislation and education beyond the mere owner should be improved wherever dogs occur near sensitive wilderness areas.
... Urban environments present benefits to wildlife such as year-round supplementary resources, which may be beneficial even to the soil microbiome (Delgado-Baquerizo et al., 2021;Lerman et al., 2021). However, urban environments also present stressors that wildlife have not coevolved with, such as introduced species (Doherty et al., 2016(Doherty et al., , 2017Legge et al., 2020), human activity (Fernández-Juricic and Tellería, 2000;Frid and Dill, 2002), introduced light and sound (Navara and Nelson, 2007;Shannon et al., 2016), pollutants (Schwarzenbach et al., 2006), and traffic (Taylor and Goldingay, 2010). Further, humans often exert predator-like pressures on wildlife (Frid and Dill, 2002;Rehnus et al., 2014;Clinchy et al., 2016;Patten and Burger, 2018), which may particularly affect predators (Suraci et al., 2019). ...
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Urban environments provide the only or best habitats that are left for wildlife in many areas, promoting increased interest in urban conservation and a need to understand how wildlife cope with urban stressors, such as altered predator activity and human disturbance. Here, we used filmed giving-up density experiments to investigate behavioral coping responses of foraging small prey animals at three sites (close, mid, and far) along an urban disturbance gradient. Our study design included “natural” and experimentally added stressor cues of predators and/or human disturbance. We observed small mammal foraging behaviors, particularly: the common brushtail possum ( Trichosurus vulpecula ), northern brown bandicoot ( Isoodon macrourus ), brown antechinus ( Antechinus stuartii ), black rat ( Rattus rattus ), and brown rat ( Rattus norvegicus ), and to a lesser degree several species of native birds. We found that at the close urban-edge environment, coping responses to human disturbances were most pronounced, and predator cues from the red fox ( Vulpes vulpes ) were perceived as least risky. However, at the mid environment, red fox cues were perceived as most risky, especially when combined with human disturbance. At the far environment, domestic cat ( Felis catus ) cues were perceived as most risky, again when combined with human disturbance. Impacts from the combined stressors of predator and human disturbance cues appeared to be additive, with higher risk being perceived with increasing distance from urban build-up. Behavioral adjustments were observed to be the primary response to stressors by small prey animals in the close environment. In the mid environment, slight temporal shifts in activity across the night were more evident. In the far environment, habitat components were likely being used differently as the primary coping response to stressors. As mostly the same species were observed along the disturbance gradient, our results suggest a level of response plasticity that is calibrated to the level of exposure to a stressor and the stressor type. To maximize conservation outcomes in urban habitats, we therefore propose that management should be sensitive to the level and history of human disturbance, as this affects the coping responses of wildlife that remain.
... Increased frequency of anthropogenic noise and yard access by pets in households were each related to more types of wildlife observed by households in our study. While this result seems counterintuitive, owing to each factor being a known stressor to wildlife [20,80], it may reflect the increased observation opportunities that each would create. Anthropogenic noises (music, machinery, appliances, and loud group activities such as sports) occur in or near household yards, thus increasing observation opportunities. ...
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Wildlife are increasingly being found in urban habitats, and likely rely on some resources in suburban household yards, which exposes them to the effects of yard management and human and pet activities. We compared the relationships between these potential disturbances and benefits to the number of different types of wildlife sighted by householders, using written surveys. Owing to the inability of many household respondents to identify animals to the species or genus level, each different ‘type’ of animal individually listed was counted to generate the total number of types of wildlife observed by each household. We found that relatively more types of wildlife were observed by residents whose yards provided ease of faunal access under or through fences, had reduced pesticide use, increased levels of anthropogenic noise, and increased presence of pets in yards. The latter two associations likely relate to the increased opportunities to observe wildlife in yards that each creates. We also investigated the use of yards by wildlife and domestic pets in open compared to more vegetated habitats by day and night, using motion-sensor cameras. All animals observed were compared to the activity of introduced brown and black rats (Rattus norvegicus, R. rattus), owing to their wild origins but long commensal history with humans. Camera images indicated that animals’ natural activity periods were maintained in yards. Brown antechinuses (Antechinus stuartii), northern brown bandicoots (Isoodon macrourus), domestic cats (Felis catus) and native birds (species as listed below) each preferred sheltered or vegetated habitats over open habitats, when compared to the introduced rats that showed little habitat preference. However, unlike the other species, the native birds used open areas more than vegetated or sheltered areas when compared within their group only. The common brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula) was observed to use open areas comparatively more than the introduced rats, but used vegetated or sheltered habitats more when compared to self only. The domestic dog (Canis familiaris) and red fox (Vulpes vulpes) used open areas more than vegetated or sheltered areas, when compared to the introduced rats, and against themselves. This indicated a level of coping with urban stressors by the native animals, but with a reliance on more vegetated habitats to allow for natural stress-relieving behaviours of escape or hiding. Here, we offer insights into how each of these findings may be used to help educate and motivate increased household responsibility for urban wildlife conservation.
... Nonetheless, the increasing dog population and the lack of responsible ownership have contributed to the transition from companion dogs to free-ranging or feral dogs (Young et al., 2011). Free-ranging and feral dogs can negatively impact wildlife through predation, competition, harassment, hybridisation, and disease transmission (Doherty et al., 2017), and human health, as a reservoir of zoonotic parasites (Shepherd et al., 2018;Belsare & Vanak, 2020) such as helminths (Rahman et al., 2020). ...
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Domestic dogs (Canis lupus familiaris) have been in contact with humans for thousands of years, playing an important role in societies. Nonetheless, the lack of responsible ownership has contributed to the transition from companion dogs to free-ranging or feral dogs that can be reservoirs of zoonotic parasites. Our goal was to identify zoonotic intestinal parasites in free-ranging dogs in a Mexican Protected Area. A total of 132 scat samples from free-ranging dogs were collected and examined using the Faust flotation technique. We identified a total of nine parasite species, four platyhelminthes, and five nematodes. Eight of nine identified parasite are zoonotic. The most frequent zoonotic parasites are Ancylostoma caninum and Ascaris spp. (19.7% each) followed by Toxascaris leonina (17.4%) and Uncinaria stenocephala (7.6%). The least frequent are Dipylidium caninum (2.2%), Capillaria spp., Hymenolepis diminuta, and Hymenolepis nana (0.75% each). This study provides the first description of intestinal zoonotic parasites richness in free-ranging dogs within a Mexican Protected Area. The presence of zoonotic parasites in canine scats represents a high risk to public health, mainly for the transmission of some species through cutaneous and visceral migrans larvae, especially in infants and kids. We recommend specific measures to prevent, control and mitigate the presence of free-ranging dogs in Protected Areas.
... In Tasmania, a single attack in 2008 by a dog or dogs resulted in the death of 30 little blue penguins (Holderness-Roddam and McQuillan, 2014). Doherty et al.'s (2017) review of the impacts of dogs on threatened species found that they have contributed to 11 vertebrate extinctions and are a threat to at least 188 species worldwide. Predation is the most frequently reported impact, with the Pacific islands being one of the regions with the most species affected. ...
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The pre-human Aotearoa New Zealand fauna was dominated by avian and reptilian species. Prior to first human settlement by East Polynesian colonists, the top predators were two giant raptorial birds. Aside from humans themselves, colonisation also resulted in the simultaneous introduction of two novel mammalian predators into this naive ecosystem, the kiore (Pacific rat) and kurī (Polynesian dog). While the ecological impacts of kiore are relatively well understood, those of kurī are difficult to assess, and as such kurī have frequently been disregarded as having any meaningful impact on New Zealand’s biodiversity. Here we use the archaeological and palaeoecological record to reassess the potential impacts of kurī on this ecosystem. We argue that far from being confined to villages, kurī could have had a significant widespread but relatively localised impact on New Zealand’s avian, reptilian and marine mammal (seals and sea lions) fauna as a novel predator of medium-sized species. In this way, kurī potentially amplified the already significant impacts of Polynesian colonists and their descendants on New Zealand’s ecosystem, prior to European arrival. As such, kurī should be included in models of human impact in addition to over-hunting, environmental modification and predation by kiore.
... Alarmingly, about 48% of these incidents occurred in and around wildlife protected areas (Home et al., 2018). Globally, domestic dogs have contributed to 11 vertebrate extinctions and pose a risk to at least 188 threatened species worldwide (Doherty et al., 2017). ...
... Thus, we considered it as an adequate proxy of the presence of wild boars, domestic dogs and ungulates. In 21 of the 29 more relevant PAs we indicated, both containing MHIA at some level, these alien species were detected (Table 2) and can represent a serious threat to wildlife by direct predation, competition and diseases (Doherty et al., 2017;Szabó et al., 2003). We also believe that HII can be explored at a large scale as a tool to predict hunting activity, as demonstrated in African forests for elephant ivory extraction (Maisels et al., 2013), associated with a low abundance of the collared peccary (Dicotyles tajacu) (Martínez-Gutiérrez, Martínez-Meyer, Palomares, & Fernández, 2018). ...
Article
To prioritise conservation actions and management strategies for threatened forest deer species at the Atlantic forest, we aimed to identify and describe the most suitable habitat areas for forest deer species and to indicate conservation measures for state agents and local communities. We adopt an approach based on ecological niche modelling, key variable thresholds and spatial analyses. In addition, we associated our approach with a human influence index, an invasive species dataset of occurrences, protected area cover and IUCN category. We indicate 2% (484 km²) of the Atlantic forest cover as conservation priority areas (CPAs). Of these, 56.8% are outside protected areas, 20.7% are inside IUCN categories i, ii and iii protected areas, 19.9% are inside IUCN categories iv, v, and vi protected areas, and 2.6% are inside indigenous areas. Also, we indicate the most relevant protected areas for deer conservation in the Atlantic forest. The CPAs were classified into more human-influenced areas (MHIA) and less human-influenced areas (LHIA), and we identified 21 significant (>120 km²) continuous CPAs outside protected areas. We highlight actions in several perspectives of human influence, governance levels and law protection that would rationalise the use of funds and human resources.
... Given Sao Paulo's high street density and intense road traffic (as in any large city), roadkill is to be expected, and probably is a relevant cause not only of injury (as registered by DEPAVE-3) but of mortality of D. aurita (as dead animals are not brought to the rehabilitation center). Free-ranging dogs, in turn, are known to be a severe threat to vertebrates worldwide, being a relevant cause of endangerment for many threatened species (Doherty et al. 2017). The current results suggest that dogs can be a relevant cause of injury also among common (not only rare or threatened) species and in cities (not only in rural areas), where dogs may have owners and not range freely (Gompper 2014). ...
... In contrast, when taking into account other measures of environmental quality, we find marginally significant negative associations between the abundance of free-ranging dogs and the densities of T. belangeri and C. erythraeus. The ecological impacts of dog Canis lupus familiaris have received less attention than those of Felis, but the evidence is increasing that negative impacts can arise either through disturbance or predation induced mortality (Young et al., 2011;Doherty et al., 2017). Our results are suggestive of the potential of such adverse impacts in urban Bangkok, as reported in some other urban studies (e.g. ...
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Urbanisation is rapidly transforming terrestrial environments, especially in the tropics. Many squirrel species tolerate urbanisation, but studies are biased towards temperate regions. We quantify the distribution and abundance of squirrels and (ecologically similar) tree-shrews along an urbanisation gradient in a rapidly urban-ising tropical mega-city (Bangkok, Thailand) located within the Indo-Burma biodiversity hotspot. We used repeated point counts in 150 1 km cells, selected using random stratification across the urbanisation gradient. We quantified species responses to (i) urbanisation intensity (measured using impervious surface cover), (ii) environmental conditions (woodland quantity and quality, human disturbance and predation pressure from free-ranging cats and dogs) and (iii) urbanisation impacts on hybridisation between congeneric Callosciurus squirrels. Three of the six species from the regional species pool were extremely rare or absent within our study region (Tamiops macclellandi, Callosciurus caniceps and Menetes berd-morei). Of the three more widespread species (Tupaia belangeri, Callosciurus fin-laysonii and Callosciurus erythraeus) only C. finlaysonii had a higher abundance in more urban locations. The increasing intensity of urbanisation has thus markedly reduced squirrel diversity and abundance, contrasting with the perception from temperate regions that squirrels typically tolerate urbanisation. Urbanisation is thus likely to have reduced important ecological functions provided by squirrels, such as seed dispersal. Models of species responses to environmental conditions suggest that improving habitat quality by increasing tree cover and diversity at local and landscape scales and reducing human disturbance and numbers of feral dogs would partially mitigating adverse impacts of urbanisation on tropical squirrels and tree-shrews. Urban infrastructure (bridge construction across the Chao-Praya River) appears to have increased the permeability of a geographic barrier that previously separated C. finlaysonii and C. erythraeus distributions, increasing hybridisation rates. Our study enhances understanding of the ecological impacts of urbanisation in biodiverse tropical regions and the action required to mitigate these impacts.
... Large populations of free-roaming dogs can greatly influence wildlife through a variety of interactions [6], affecting the persistence and abundance of carnivore populations [7][8][9]. Freeroaming dogs also predate on native wildlife, sometimes threatening endangered species [10]. ...
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Free-roaming domestic dogs (Canis lupus familiaris) pose major conservation and public health risks worldwide. To better understand the threat of domestic dogs to wildlife and people and add to the growing literature on free-roaming dog ecology, a study was conducted to estimate the dog population in Tulúm, México. A modified mark-recapture technique and program MARK were used to obtain dog population estimates along six different transects dividing the city. Population estimates ranged from 19.75 dogs in one transect to 101.841 dogs in another, with 150 total dogs identified throughout the study and an estimated minimum population density of 48.57 dogs/km2. Fecal samples were also opportunistically collected for parasite identification through fecal flotation analysis using the McMaster technique. Out of 25 samples collected, 19 tested positive for gastrointestinal parasites with the most common species found being Ancylostoma caninum, followed by Toxocara canis, Dipylidium caninum, and Cystoisospora spp. Parasite loads ranged from 50 to 10,700 ova per gram of feces. The large population of free-roaming dogs and the prevalence of three zoonotic parasites highlight the importance of understanding free-roaming dog ecology and educating the public on the health risks free-roaming dogs pose. Los perros callejeros (Canis lupus familiaris) representan un gran riesgo para la conservación de animales y la salud pública mundialmente. Para comprender mejor la amenaza que significan los perros domésticos para la fauna silvestre y los humanos y aportar a la creciente bibliografía sobre la ecología de los perros callejeros, se realizó una investigación para estimar la población de los perros en Tulúm, México. Se utilizó una técnica modificada de marcado y recaptura junto con el programa MARK para estimar la población canina en seis transectos de la ciudad. Los estimados varían desde 19.75 perros en un transecto hasta 101,841 en otro, con un total de 150 perros identificados en el transcurso de la investigación y una densidad mínima estimada de 48,57 perros/km2. Además, se hizo una recolección oportunista de muestras de heces para la identificación de parásitos por medio del análisis de flotacíon fecal, con el método McMaster. De las 25 muestras recolectadas, 19 resultaron positivas para parásitos gastrointestinales, de las cuales las especies más comunes fueron Ancylostomoa caninum, seguida por Toxocara canis, Dipylidium caninum, y Cystoisospora spp. Las cargas parasitarias variaron desde 50 hasta 10.700 óvulos por gramo de heces. La alta población de perros callejeros y la prevalencia de tres enfermedades zoonóticas resaltan la importancia de entender la ecología de los perros callejeros y educar al público sobre los riesgos que significan los perros callejeros para la salud.
... Given Sao Paulo's high street density and intense road traffic (as in any large city), roadkill is to be expected, and probably is a relevant cause not only of injury (as registered by DEPAVE-3) but of mortality of D. aurita (as dead animals are not brought to the rehabilitation center). Free-ranging dogs, in turn, are known to be a severe threat to vertebrates worldwide, being a relevant cause of endangerment for many threatened species (Doherty et al. 2017). The current results suggest that dogs can be a relevant cause of injury also among common (not only rare or threatened) species and in cities (not only in rural areas), where dogs may have owners and not range freely (Gompper 2014). ...
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Research has shown that human-wildlife conflicts represent critical conservation challenges in rural settings. Despite intense urbanization, and the disconnection from nature that comes with it, those conflicts are yet to be studied in urban settings. To start closing that gap, this chapter focus on the black-eared opossum (Didelphis aurita) – a common, synanthropic marsupial endemic to the Atlantic Forest – as a model to explore the drivers of human-wildlife interactions in one of the largest cities worldwide, the metropolis of São Paulo in Brazil. Using data from São Paulo Wildlife Rehabilitation Center, the relative importance of vegetation cover, density of roadside trees, and human population density were tested on the frequency of both direct (encounters with humans) and indirect (injuries caused by infrastructure or domestic animals) human-D. aurita interactions. The frequency of interactions was overall high and explained by the synergistic effect of vegetation cover and human density. The positive effect of vegetation cover on the frequency of interactions was only observed in densely populated areas of the city. The current results corroborate the importance of marsupials to humanwildlife interactions in Neotropical cities and highlight the relevance of prioritizing preventive measures to minimize impacts of negative human-wildlife interactions in vegetated, densely populated urban areas.
... One example of this is a video we captured of domestic dogs chasing a sambar deer (Appendix III). Dogs disturbing threatened wildlife is common on a global scale (Doherty et al. 2017), and are a known threat to small mammals, including the species recorded in these surveys (Home et al. 2018). Domestic dog disturbance is potentially an issue with both nocturnal and diurnal species, and are known to be used by hunters in the park to poach animals at night (Bach Hy 2021). ...
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The U Minh wetlands of southern Vietnam in Ca Mau and Kieng Giang provinces are a degraded, peat-swamp wetland mosaic known to retain several globally threatened species. We deployed intensive, targeted camera-traps across U Minh Thuong National Park and U Minh Ha National Park from December 2019 to May 2020, and from November 2020 to June 2021, respectively. Our aim was to detect threatened otters, wild cats, and pangolins in each protected area, to identify what potential threats they may face, and to inform conservation priorities for park managers. Our results showed that both protected areas harbour significant regionally important populations of globally threatened Sunda pangolins ( Manis javanica ), and Hairy-nosed otters ( Lutra sumatrana ). However, Fishing cats ( Prionailurus viverrinus ) and Large-spotted civet ( Viverra megaspila ) previously recorded from U Minh Thuong National Park, were not observed. Other than wide-ranging species insensitive to human disturbance (i.e., Common palm civets and Leopard cats), all small carnivores were most active in Melaleuca and swamp/ Melaleuca habitats in U Minh Thuong, and both the wetland plantations and disturbed forests of U Minh Ha according to their photographic rates. Human and domestic dogs’ activity periods in both protected areas overlapped strongly with Hairy-nosed otters, which could influence their dispersal abilities and access to resources. Furthermore, dogs in this part of southern Vietnam are often used for hunting, so there is a strong possibility the overlap could lead to deadly interactions as well. Long-term and short-term threats are discussed with relevance to U Minh ecosystem health and future recommendations.
... Domestic dogs can serve as a reservoir for multiple diseases that can negatively affect dhole populations (e.g., rabies, Mani et al., 2021), additionally our interview survey found that domestic dogs were reported inside the forest in 80.9% of study sites. Although most sites reported no direct interactions between dhole and domestic dogs, there is an inherent risk of disease transfer (Doherty et al., 2017) in areas where the species overlap (Jenks et al., 2012). Annual vaccination of domestic dogs for relevant diseases and improved surveillance in potential contact areas may reduce the risk of transmission to dhole and other wildlife populations (Lushasi et al., 2021). ...
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Dhole (Cuon alpinus) is threatened with extinction across its range due to habitat loss and prey depletion. Despite this, no previous study has investigated the distribution and threat of the species at a regional scale. This lack of knowledge continues to impede conservation planning for the species. Here we modeled suitable habitat using presence-only camera trap data for dhole and dhole prey species in mainland Southeast Asia and assessed the threat level to dhole in this region using an expert-informed Bayesian Belief Network. We integrated prior information to identify dhole habitat strongholds that could support populations over the next 50 years. Our habitat suitability model identified forest cover and prey availability as the most influential factors affecting dhole occurrence. Similarly, our threat model predicted that forest loss and prey depletion were the greatest threats, followed by local hunting, non-timber forest product collection, and domestic dog incursion into the forest. These threats require proactive resource management, strong legal For affiliation refer to page 13
... Some species are identified as harmful or de facto vermin, while others, even if they produce a higher level of damage to human properties, receive little or no public attention or blame. While some iconic animals, such as large carnivores, tend to be blamed to a much greater extent, small mammals (e.g., rodents), wild ungulates (e.g., wild boar Sus scrofa) or domestic animals (e.g., feral dogs), may, for one reason or another, be relatively ignored, despite being responsible for similar or even greater socio-economic impacts (Knight, 2000), or for their impacts on biodiversity conservation (e.g., Medina et al., 2011;Doherty et al., 2017). ...
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From an anthropological perspective, the wolf (Canis lupus) is considered an animal with multiple symbolic meanings. Every social sector uses particular symbolic meanings to express contrasting viewpoints, concerns and claims related to wolves and sharing the landscape with this species. Although distinctive particularities may exist in each specific context, common elements can be observed in social conflicts around the presence of wolves across its range. In this contention, each group tends to impose its vision of what our relationship with wolves should be. In this essay, we synthesized several symbolic meanings and social constructs around wolves. We argue that, under the current wolf debate, the complex symbolic burden of the animal must be acknowledged, in order to properly address social conflicts around the species. This requires promoting communication strategies that facilitate a change in the symbolism and meanings of the wolf.
... Domestic dogs can serve as a reservoir for multiple diseases that can negatively affect dhole populations (e.g., rabies, Mani et al., 2021), additionally our interview survey found that domestic dogs were reported inside the forest in 80.9% of study sites. Although most sites reported no direct interactions between dhole and domestic dogs, there is an inherent risk of disease transfer (Doherty et al., 2017) in areas where the species overlap (Jenks et al., 2012). Annual vaccination of domestic dogs for relevant diseases and improved surveillance in potential contact areas may reduce the risk of transmission to dhole and other wildlife populations (Lushasi et al., 2021). ...
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Abstract Dhole (Cuon alpinus) is threatened with extinction across its range due to habitat loss and prey depletion. Despite this, no previous study has investigated the distribution and threat of the species at a regional scale. This lack of knowledge continues to impede conservation planning for the species. Here we modeled suitable habitat using presence‐only camera trap data for dhole and dhole prey species in mainland Southeast Asia and assessed the threat level to dhole in this region using an expert‐informed Bayesian Belief Network. We integrated prior information to identify dhole habitat strongholds that could support populations over the next 50 years. Our habitat suitability model identified forest cover and prey availability as the most influential factors affecting dhole occurrence. Similarly, our threat model predicted that forest loss and prey depletion were the greatest threats, followed by local hunting, non‐timber forest product collection, and domestic dog incursion into the forest. These threats require proactive resource management, strong legal protection, and cross‐sector collaboration. We predicted
... The results we obtained regarding the observed seroprevalence for CDV were similar to those found by using 1:16 titer cut-off for mink (21.7% them, 17% us) and dogs (41.6% them, 60% us), but higher than those reported by Kimber et al. (2000) for river otter (Lontra canadensis) in North America because they recorded 4.7% (3 of 64) positive for CDV (1:8-1:768), and 7 of 64 (10.9%) otters positive for CPV-2 (range of titers 1:20-1:640). However, higher seroprevalences were found when compared to those obtained for American mink and other mustelids in France by Philippa et al. (2008) who recorded 9% of 127 European mink (Mustela lutreola), 20% of 210 polecats (Mustela putorius), 5% of 112 American mink, 33% of 21 stone marten (Martes foina), and 5% of 20 pine marten (Martes martes) in regions with almost no presence of free-ranging domestic dogs (Doherty et al., 2017), although they considered positive a 1:10 titer. In our case, the observed seroprevalence in American mink was 33% for CDV with a titer 1:350, and 16% for CPV with a titer 1:16. ...
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Introduced alien carnivores are host to infectious diseases that may become an important threat for native carnivore species conservation. Canine distemper virus (CDV) is thought to be transmitted among individuals by direct contact and to present viral dynamics associated with a density-dependent multi-host carnivore community. In contrast, Canine Parvovirus (CPV) is mostly transmitted by indirect contact and does not depend only on the density, but also on the social behaviour of infected as well as susceptible hosts. The objective of this study was to assess how introduced American mink (Neovison vison) can act as a bridge-host between domestic dog (Canis familiaris) and Southern river otter (Lontra provocax) in different dog and mink population density scenarios. Our data show that otters are seropositive to both CDV and PV, as well as a molecular identity to Parvovirus in dogs and minks. Furthermore, a strong positive correlation between dog population density and observed seroprevalence of CDV in dogs, minks, and otters was recorded. For Parvovirus, the observed seroprevalence in mink and otters was not correlated to a higher dog population density, but instead a relationship between dog and mink population densities and social behaviour. Our results suggest that introduced American mink and domestic dogs are reservoirs of CDV and PV, both being diseases of major importance for the conservation of native endangered carnivores in Patagonia.
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Free-ranging domestic dogs Canis familiaris threaten wildlife species through predation, hybridization, competition for resources, and by contributing to the transmission of pathogens. The impacts of predation may be problematic, but in many regions the interactions of free-ranging dogs and wildlife are poorly studied. To determine the extent of the impacts of attacks by free-ranging dogs on Iranian mammals, we reviewed nearly 2 decades of social and traditional media reports and the scientific literature to gather data from across the country. We identified 160 free-ranging dog attacks (79 from academic articles, 14 from social media, and 67 from a variety of news websites) from 22 of the country's 31 provinces. Attacks by dogs were reported on 17 species, including nine Carnivora, six Artiodactyla, one Rodentia, and one Lagomorpha species. Most of the reported attacks on carnivores were on felids, including the Asiatic cheetah Acinonyx jubatus (n = 19), Eurasian lynx Lynx lynx (n = 18), caracal Caracal caracal (n = 10) and Pallas's cat Otocolobus manul (n = 8). Attacks on Artiodactyla were primarily reported for goitered gazelle Gazella subgutturosa (n = 47). Most of these attacks occurred within or adjacent to protected areas (n = 116, 73%), suggesting that free-ranging dogs are one of the most important human-associated threats to wildlife species even in protected landscapes. The impact of free-ranging dogs may be hampering conservation, and therefore we suggest some practical policy guidance for managing the impacts of free-ranging dogs on threatened species.
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Free-roaming dogs can present significant challenges to public health, wildlife conservation, and livestock production. Their own welfare may also be a concern, as free-roaming dogs can experience poor health and welfare. Dog population management is widely conducted to mitigate these issues. To ensure efficient use of resources, it is critical that effective, cost-efficient, and high-welfare strategies are identified. The dog population comprises distinct subpopulations characterised by their restriction status and level of ownership, but the assessment of dog population management often fails to consider the impact of the interaction between subpopulations on management success. We present a system dynamics model that incorporates an interactive and dynamic system of dog subpopulations. We identify that methods incorporating both fertility control and responsible ownership interventions (a reduction in abandonment and an increase in shelter adoptions) have the greatest potential to reduce free-roaming dog population sizes over longer periods of time, whilst being cost-effective and improving overall welfare. We suggest that future management should be applied at high levels of coverage and should target all sources of population increase, such as abandonment, births, and free-roaming owned dogs, to ensure effective and cost-efficient reduction in free-roaming dog numbers.
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Invasive species possess wide-ranging social and ecological impacts globally. Although the ecological impacts are well studied, social aspects especially in developing countries are often poorly understood. Free-ranging dogs (FRDs) (Canis familiaris) are the most abundant carnivore on earth with a high level of invasion. Recently, the presence of FRDs in the Jiroft city in southern Iran has increased, and local managers have not yet developed a coherent management plan. Given the high rate of human bites by FRDs in this region, a principled management plan with integrated collaboration between the relevant organizations is necessary. To better understand collaboration networks, we interviewed employees of three relevant governmental organizations about their collaboration with other organizations toward FRD management. Our objective in this study was to (1) assess the collaboration between the municipality, provincial offices of veterinary medicine, and health network and (2) predict the behavioral tendencies of network actors based on their current position in the FRD management network. Although most employees have never worked together to manage FRDs, our results showed that most of the interviewees did not evaluate the role of other organizations in FRD management as beneficial. Moreover, the current assessment of the employees of the two municipal and health organizations affects their current collaboration in the management of FRDs. Also, the current collaboration has a significant impact on their intention to collaborate in the future. We make suggestions for improving collaboration in managing FRDs in this region.
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Birds like other taxa are under severe human-induced threats all over the world. According to the latest taxonomic studies, there are more than 11,000 species of birds in the world, and nearly 1262 were reported from India in 2016, but now the list is 1210. Nearly 13 percent of birds of the world are listed in IUCN Red List. Interestingly, in India also about 14 percent of bird species are either Threatened or Near Threatened, according to Red List of IUCN-BirdLife International. Hunting, trapping, and bird trade of all Indian bird species are prohibited. India also has nearly 700 protected areas, some specifically declared as bird sanctuaries. Bombay Natural History Society and BirdLife International have recognized 554 Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas of India. Many IBAs are already in the PA category. Despite this, emerging new threats from windmills, power lines, solar panels, pesticides, climate change, invasive species, and free-ranging stray dogs are threatening the birdlife of India. Birds living in human-dominated landscapes and waterscapes are particularly prone to these threats. These threats are in addition to the existing threats of habitat destruction, habitat deterioration, and poaching. The paper discusses the emerging new threats and recommends conservation measures to protect the birdlife of India.
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Domestic dogs are the most abundant carnivore globally and have demonstrable negative impacts to wildlife; yet, little evidence regarding their functional roles in natural food webs exists. Adding dogs to food webs may result in a net loss (via suppression of naturally occurring species), net gain (via mesopredator release), or no change (via functional replacement) to ecosystem function. Scavenging is a pivotal function in ecosystems, particularly those that are energetically supported by carrion. Dogs also scavenge on animal carcasses, but whether scavenging by dogs influences the structural and functional properties of food webs remains unclear. Here we used camera traps baited with carrion to test the effect of dogs on the composition and diversity of the vertebrate scavenger guild, as well as carrion detection and consumption rates. We conducted this work in sandy beach ecosystems, which rely on the import of marine organic matter (i.e. stranding of dead marine animals). Diversity of the scavenger community was similar on beaches without dogs. Dogs increased the time it took for carcasses to be detected and decreased the proportion of carrion consumed. This ‘dog suppression effect’ on scavenging was stronger for nocturnal mammalian scavengers, presumably being driven by indirect trait-mediated effects, which raises further questions about the broader ecological consequences of domestic dogs in natural systems.
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Free-roaming dogs can present significant challenges to public health, wildlife conservation, and livestock production. Free-roaming dogs may also experience poor health and welfare. Dog population management is widely conducted to mitigate these issues. To ensure efficient use of resources, it is critical that effective, cost-efficient, and high-welfare strategies are identified. The dog population comprises distinct subpopulations characterised by their restriction status and level of ownership, but the assessment of dog population management often fails to consider the impact of the interaction between subpopulations on management success. We present a system dynamics model that incorporates an interactive and dynamic system of dog subpopulations. Methods incorporating both fertility control and responsible ownership interventions (leading to a reduction in abandonment and roaming of owned dogs, and an increase in shelter adoptions) have the greatest potential to reduce free-roaming dog population sizes over longer periods of time, whilst being cost-effective and improving overall welfare. We suggest that future management should be applied at high levels of coverage and should target all sources of population increase, such as abandonment, births, and owners of free-roaming dogs, to ensure effective and cost-efficient reduction in free-roaming dog numbers.
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Encouraging compliance with dog leashing regulations in natural areas is a priority for land managers seeking to protect wildlife. We surveyed residents of Victoria, Australia, to document self-reported leashing behavior by dog owners in different habitat types, exploring demographic, attitudinal, and belief variables as predictors of compliance. We found support for leashing regulations among dog owners (n = 313) and those without dogs (n = 711), but generally low reported compliance by owners. Social norms about leashing predicted leashing at all areas, and habits (i.e., leashing where leashing was not regulated) predicted compliance with regulations. Older age and beliefs about wildlife protection predicted compliance in water-based areas (e.g., beaches, wetlands) and beliefs that off-leash roaming is beneficial to dogs predicted compliance in other natural areas (e.g., hiking trails). Exploring these context-based differences allows managers to identify and understand target groups to design tailored messaging and other behavior change interventions.
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Urbanization of natural landscapes and increasing human populations have brought people and our companion animals into closer contact with wildlife, even within protected areas. To provide guidance for human–wildlife coexistence, it is therefore critical to understand the effects of anthropogenic disturbances and how well native wildlife species survive in human-dominated landscapes. We investigated the spatio-temporal responses of 10 vertebrate taxa, with an emphasis on the Endangered Eld's deer Rucervus eldii thamin , to anthropogenic disturbances in Shwesettaw Wildlife Sanctuary, Myanmar. We quantified anthropogenic disturbances as distance from human settlements, distance from a highway, and the presence of people and free-ranging dogs Canis familiaris . Anthropogenic disturbances had stronger negative impacts on the detection of native wildlife species than on occupancy. Eld's deer avoided areas close to human settlements and showed low diel activity overlap with both people and dogs, although we found a positive association with human presence at the camera-trap sites. Five species exhibited lower diel activity overlap with people in the rainy season when human activity is the highest in our study area. All studied wildlife species shifted to nocturnal activity or did not show any clear activity pattern during the cool-dry season when the presence of dogs increased. The ecological and conservation impacts of dogs are underestimated in South-east Asia, particularly in Myanmar, and this case study highlights the impacts of dogs on the temporal use of habitat by wildlife and the need for better practices in the management of dogs within protected areas.
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Hybridization between wolves (Canis lupus) and domestic dogs (Canis familiaris) can represent a threat to wild populations via genetic introgression and ecological competition. Therefore understanding the ecological role of hybrids may be crucial for developing appropriate conservation strategies. The Italian wolf population has a peculiar genetic composition due to a long-lasting geographic isolation. Nowadays, however, its genetic integrity is threatened by the spread of canine genes as a result of the hybridization with stray dogs in the wild. The aim of the present study was to gain insights into the ecological role of free-ranging wolf–dog hybrids by investigating their winter food habits in comparison with wolves in a mountain area of Central Italy. Levels of genetic introgression from the dogs were assessed in two adjacent areas occupied by up to five different packs by analyzing non-invasive samples and carcasses collected therein with a set of uniparental and bi-parental molecular markers. The obtained results enabled us to classify the two areas as ‘hybrid’ and ‘wolf’ areas based on their level of genetic introgression. Trophic niche and similarity/dissimilarity analyses did not detect significant difference in the diet between the two areas: in both of them, wild boar was the main prey, followed by roe deer. Furthermore, the same age/body mass classes of the two ungulates were selected by wolves and hybrids. Our findings confirmed wolf–dog hybrids as potential competitors for wolves. Further studies on other aspects of their biology and ecology are recommended in order to better estimate the impact of hybridization on natural wolf populations.
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Significance Invasive mammalian predators are arguably the most damaging group of alien animal species for global biodiversity. Thirty species of invasive predator are implicated in the extinction or endangerment of 738 vertebrate species—collectively contributing to 58% of all bird, mammal, and reptile extinctions. Cats, rodents, dogs, and pigs have the most pervasive impacts, and endemic island faunas are most vulnerable to invasive predators. That most impacted species are insular indicates that management of invasive predators on islands should be a global conservation priority. Understanding and mitigating the impact of invasive mammalian predators is essential for reducing the rate of global biodiversity loss.
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A dogged investigation of domestication The history of how wolves became our pampered pooches of today has remained controversial. Frantz et al. describe high-coverage sequencing of the genome of an Irish dog from the Bronze Age as well as ancient dog mitochondrial DNA sequences. Comparing ancient dogs to a modern worldwide panel of dogs shows an old, deep split between East Asian and Western Eurasian dogs. Thus, dogs were domesticated from two separate wolf populations on either side of the Old World. Science , this issue p. 1228
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1 Dogs Canis familiaris are the world's most common carnivore and are known to interact with wildlife as predators, prey, competitors, and disease reservoirs or vectors. 2 Despite these varied roles in the community, the interaction of dogs with sympatric wild carnivore species is poorly understood. We review how dogs have been classified in the literature, and illustrate how the location and ranging behaviour of dogs are important factors in predicting their interactions with wild prey and carnivores. 3 We detail evidence of dogs as intraguild competitors with sympatric carnivores in the context of exploitative, interference and apparent competition. 4 Dogs can have localized impacts on prey populations, but in general they are not exploitative competitors with carnivores. Rather, most dog populations are highly dependent on human-derived food and gain a relatively small proportion of their diet from wild prey. However, because of human-derived food subsidies, dogs can occur at high population densities and thus could potentially outcompete native carnivores, especially when prey is limited. 5 Dogs can be effective interference competitors, especially with medium-sized and small carnivores. Dogs may fill the role of an interactive medium-sized canid within the carnivore community, especially in areas where the native large carnivore community is depauperate. 6 Dogs can also be reservoirs of pathogens, because most populations around the world are free-ranging and unvaccinated. Diseases such as rabies and canine distemper have resulted in severe population declines in several endangered carnivores coexisting with high-density dog populations. Dogs can therefore be viewed as pathogen-mediated apparent competitors, capable of facilitating large-scale population declines in carnivores. 7 Based on this information, we propose conceptual models that use dog population size and ranging patterns to predict the potential for dogs to be intraguild competitors. We discuss how interactions between dogs and carnivores might influence native carnivore communities.
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Although the domestic dog (Canis familiaris) is a ubiquitous exotic predator that can detrimentally affect natural environments, studies on their ecological impact are relatively scarce, particularly at a national scale. We exploited data derived from Polish Hunting Association reports to provide a national evaluation of rural free-ranging dogs in Poland. Our results demonstrate that free-ranging dogs are widespread and abundant, frequently killing wildlife and livestock in Poland and likely exerting intraguild competition with native carnivores such as grey wolves (Canis lupus). On average, hunting club records estimate that over 138,000 rural free-ranging dogs occurred annually in hunting grounds. In addition, nearly 3000 free-ranging greyhounds and their mixed breeds occurred annually on hunting grounds, although greyhound hunting has been banned in Poland and they are legally required to be restrained within fencing. On average, over 33,000 wild animals and 280 livestock were killed by free-ranging dogs on Polish hunting grounds annually. The number of both wild animals and livestock killed by dogs were strongly and positively correlated with the numbers of rural free-ranging dogs recorded on hunting grounds, reflective of their predation pressure. Also, the number of wild animals killed by dogs was positively correlated with estimates of population sizes and harvest levels of wildlife, reflective of prey availability. Dog preda-tion, in conjunction with harvest by humans, may cause unsustainable off-take rates of some game species. Grey wolves, documented within 39 of the 49 Hunting Districts, ate similar prey as dogs, including ungulates and livestock , and killed dogs on hunting grounds, suggesting both resource and interference competition between these sympatric canids. This comprehensive analysis provides important information about the ecological impact of free-ranging dogs and recommendations for alternative legislative and management measures to control their impacts.
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This chapter reviews the evolutionary history, the population sizes across the globe, and the demographics of dogs, providing a baseline for discussions about the interactions of dogs, humans, and wildlife. It also delves into the origin and taxonomic classification of dogs. It examines the direct and indirect influence of dogs on wildlife.
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Invasive species have reshaped the composition of biomes across the globe, and considerable cost is now associated with minimising their ecological, social and economic impacts. Mammalian predators are among the most damaging invaders, having caused numerous species extinctions. Here, we review evidence of interactions between invasive predators and six key threats that together have strong potential to influence both the impacts of the predators, and their management. We show that impacts of invasive predators can be classified as either functional or numerical, and that they interact with other threats through both habitat- and community-mediated pathways. Ecosystem context and invasive predator identity are central in shaping variability in these relationships and their outcomes. Greater recognition of the ecological complexities between major processes that threaten biodiversity, including changing spatial and temporal relationships among species, is required to both advance ecological theory and improve conservation actions and outcomes. We discuss how novel approaches to conservation management can be used to address interactions between threatening processes and ameliorate invasive predator impacts.