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Special Issue "Urban Wildlife Management"

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A special issue of Animals (ISSN 2076-2615).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 October 2013)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Darryl Jones

Environmental Futures Research Institute and Griffith School of Environment, Griffith University, Nathan QLD 4111, Australia
Website | E-Mail
Interests: urban ecology and management; road ecology; behavioural ecology; human dimensions of wildlife management

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

For the first time in human history, most people now live in cities. This is a profound change for humanity, both ecologically and socially, but also in terms of our interactions and perceptions of wildlife. While most species are unable to cope with the changes associated with urbanization, some have learned to take full advantage of the opportunities provided by human-dominated environments. Conflicts between people and wildlife in cities are increasing, with attempts to solve and manage these issues becoming a significant challenge.

Original manuscripts that address these issues are invited for this special issue, especially those that explore (1) innovative solutions to traditional wildlife-human conflicts, and (2) the importance of incorporating community involvement in developing successful wildlife management plans.

Dr. Darryl Jones
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Animals is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 600 CHF (Swiss Francs). English correction and/or formatting fees will be charged in certain cases for those articles accepted for publication that require extensive additional formatting and/or English corrections. For further details see here.


Keywords

  • urban wildlife management
  • human-wildlife conflicts
  • human dimensions of wildlife
  • urban ecology

Published Papers (10 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle A Reproductive Management Program for an Urban Population of Eastern Grey Kangaroos (Macropus giganteus)
Animals 2014, 4(3), 562-582; doi:10.3390/ani4030562
Received: 18 December 2013 / Revised: 10 September 2014 / Accepted: 10 September 2014 / Published: 15 September 2014
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (6744 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Traditionally, culling has been the expedient, most common, and in many cases, the only tool used to control free-ranging kangaroo populations. We applied a reproductive control program to a population of eastern grey kangaroos confined to a golf course in South East Queensland.
[...] Read more.
Traditionally, culling has been the expedient, most common, and in many cases, the only tool used to control free-ranging kangaroo populations. We applied a reproductive control program to a population of eastern grey kangaroos confined to a golf course in South East Queensland. The program aimed to reduce fecundity sufficiently for the population to decrease over time so that overgrazing of the fairways and the frequency of human–animal conflict situations were minimised. In 2003, 92% of the female kangaroos above 5 kg bodyweight were implanted with the GnRH agonist deslorelin after darting with a dissociative anaesthetic. In 2007, 86% of the females above 5 kg were implanted with deslorelin and also 87% of the males above 5 kg were sterilised by either orchidectomy or vasectomy. In 2005, 2008 and 2009, the population was censused to assess the effect of each treatment. The 2003 deslorelin program resulted in effective zero population growth for approximately 2.5 years. The combined deslorelin–surgery program in 2007 reduced the birth rate from 0.3 to 0.06%/year for 16 months, resulting in a 27% population reduction by November 2009. The results were consistent with implants conferring contraception to 100% of implanted females for at least 12 months. The iatrogenic mortality rates for each program were 10.5% and 4.9%, respectively, with 50% of all mortalities due to darting-related injuries, exertional myopathy/hyperthermia or recovery misadventure. The short term sexual and agonistic behaviour of the males was assessed for the 2007 program: no significant changes were seen in adult males given the vasectomy procedure, while sexual behaviours’ were decreased in adult males given the orchidectomy procedure. It is concluded that female reproduction was effectively controlled by implantation with deslorrelin and male reproductive behaviour was reduced by orchidectomy, which together achieved population control. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Wildlife Management)
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Open AccessArticle Hopping Down the Main Street: Eastern Grey Kangaroos at Home in an Urban Matrix
Animals 2014, 4(2), 272-291; doi:10.3390/ani4020272
Received: 21 March 2014 / Revised: 17 May 2014 / Accepted: 19 May 2014 / Published: 27 May 2014
Cited by 7 | PDF Full-text (1496 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Most urban mammals are small. However, one of the largest marsupials, the Eastern Grey Kangaroo Macropus giganteus, occurs in some urban areas. In 2007, we embarked on a longitudinal study of this species in the seaside town of Anglesea in southern Victoria,
[...] Read more.
Most urban mammals are small. However, one of the largest marsupials, the Eastern Grey Kangaroo Macropus giganteus, occurs in some urban areas. In 2007, we embarked on a longitudinal study of this species in the seaside town of Anglesea in southern Victoria, Australia. We have captured and tagged 360 individuals to date, fitting each adult with a collar displaying its name. We have monitored survival, reproduction and movements by resighting, recapture and radio-tracking, augmented by citizen science reports of collared individuals. Kangaroos occurred throughout the town, but the golf course formed the nucleus of this urban population. The course supported a high density of kangaroos (2–5/ha), and approximately half of them were tagged. Total counts of kangaroos on the golf course were highest in summer, at the peak of the mating season, and lowest in winter, when many males but not females left the course. Almost all tagged adult females were sedentary, using only part of the golf course and adjacent native vegetation and residential blocks. In contrast, during the non-mating season (autumn and winter), many tagged adult males ranged widely across the town in a mix of native vegetation remnants, recreation reserves, vacant blocks, commercial properties and residential gardens. Annual fecundity of tagged females was generally high (≥70%), but survival of tagged juveniles was low (54%). We could not determine the cause of death of most juveniles. Vehicles were the major (47%) cause of mortality of tagged adults. Road-kills were concentrated (74%) in autumn and winter, and were heavily male biased: half of all tagged males died on roads compared with only 20% of tagged females. We predict that this novel and potent mortality factor will have profound, long-term impacts on the demography and behavior of the urban kangaroo population at Anglesea. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Wildlife Management)
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Open AccessArticle Environmental and Anthropogenic Impacts on Avifaunal Assemblages in an Urban Parkland, 1976 to 2007
Animals 2014, 4(1), 119-130; doi:10.3390/ani4010119
Received: 11 December 2013 / Revised: 10 March 2014 / Accepted: 12 March 2014 / Published: 17 March 2014
PDF Full-text (186 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Urban environments are unique, rapidly changing habitats in which almost half of the world’s human population resides. The effects of urbanisation, such as habitat (vegetation) removal, pollution and modification of natural areas, commonly cause biodiversity loss. Long-term ecological monitoring of urban environments is
[...] Read more.
Urban environments are unique, rapidly changing habitats in which almost half of the world’s human population resides. The effects of urbanisation, such as habitat (vegetation) removal, pollution and modification of natural areas, commonly cause biodiversity loss. Long-term ecological monitoring of urban environments is vital to determine the composition and long-term trends of faunal communities. This paper provides a detailed view of long-term changes in avifaunal assemblages of the Adelaide City parklands and discusses the anthropogenic and environmental factors that contributed to the changes between 1976 and 2007. The Adelaide City parklands (ACP) comprise 760 ha of land surrounding Adelaide’s central business district. Naturalist Robert Whatmough completed a 32-year survey of the ACP to determine the structure of the urban bird community residing there. Annual species richness and the abundance of birds in March and September months were analysed. Linear regression analysis was applied to species richness and abundance data of each assemblage. Resident parkland birds demonstrated significant declines in abundance. Native and introduced species also exhibited long-term declines in species richness and abundance throughout the 32-year period. Cycles of varying time periods indicated fluctuations in avian biodiversity demonstrating the need for future monitoring and statistical analyses on bird communities in the Adelaide City parklands. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Wildlife Management)
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Open AccessArticle Effectiveness of Gel Repellents on Feral Pigeons
Animals 2014, 4(1), 1-15; doi:10.3390/ani4010001
Received: 30 October 2013 / Revised: 12 December 2013 / Accepted: 12 December 2013 / Published: 19 December 2013
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (157 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Millions of feral pigeons (Columba livia) live in close association with the human population in our cities. They pose serious health risks to humans and lead to high economic loss due to damage caused to buildings. Consequently, house owners and city
[...] Read more.
Millions of feral pigeons (Columba livia) live in close association with the human population in our cities. They pose serious health risks to humans and lead to high economic loss due to damage caused to buildings. Consequently, house owners and city authorities are not willing to allow pigeons on their buildings. While various avian repellents are regularly introduced onto the market, scientific proof of efficacy is lacking. This study aimed at testing the effectiveness of two avian gel repellents and additionally examined their application from animal welfare standpoint. The gels used an alleged tactile or visual aversion of the birds, reinforced by additional sensory cues. We mounted experimental shelves with the installed repellents in a pigeon loft and observed the behavior of free-living feral pigeons towards the systems. Both gels showed a restricted, transient repellent effect, but failed to prove the claimed complete effectiveness. Additionally, the gels’ adhesive effect remains doubtful in view of animal welfare because gluing of plumage presents a risk to feral pigeons and also to other non-target birds. This study infers that both gels lack the promised complete efficacy, conflict with animal welfare concerns and are therefore not suitable for feral pigeon management in urban areas. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Wildlife Management)
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Open AccessArticle Wildlife Warning Signs: Public Assessment of Components, Placement and Designs to Optimise Driver Response
Animals 2013, 3(4), 1142-1161; doi:10.3390/ani3041142
Received: 25 October 2013 / Revised: 12 December 2013 / Accepted: 12 December 2013 / Published: 17 December 2013
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (584 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Wildlife warning signs are the most commonly used and widespread form of road impact mitigation, aimed at reducing the incidence of wildlife–vehicle collisions. Evidence of the effectiveness of currently used signs is rare and often indicates minimal change in driver behaviour. Improving the
[...] Read more.
Wildlife warning signs are the most commonly used and widespread form of road impact mitigation, aimed at reducing the incidence of wildlife–vehicle collisions. Evidence of the effectiveness of currently used signs is rare and often indicates minimal change in driver behaviour. Improving the design of these signs to increase the likelihood of appropriate driver response has the potential to reduce the incidence of wildlife–vehicle collisions. This study aimed to examine and assess the opinions of drivers on wildlife warning sign designs through a public opinion survey. Three currently used sign designs and five alternative sign designs were compared in the survey. A total of 134 drivers were surveyed. The presence of temporal specifications and an updated count of road-killed animals on wildlife warning signs were assessed, as well as the position of the sign. Drivers’ responses to the eight signs were scaled separately at three speed limits and participants indicated the sign to which they were most likely to respond. Three signs consistently ranked high. The messages conveyed by these signs and their prominent features were explored. Animal-activated and vehicle speed-activated signs were ranked very highly by participants. Extensive field trials of various sign designs are needed to further this research into optimizing wildlife warning sign designs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Wildlife Management)
Open AccessArticle Stakeholder Perceptions of Threatened Species and Their Management on Urban Beaches
Animals 2013, 3(4), 1002-1020; doi:10.3390/ani3041002
Received: 28 August 2013 / Revised: 21 October 2013 / Accepted: 21 October 2013 / Published: 24 October 2013
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (242 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
We surveyed 579 recreationists regarding management of the threatened, beach-dwelling Hooded Plover Thinornis rubricollis. We postulated that: (1) lower awareness of the species and higher ‘inconvenience’ of management would engender less favourable perceptions of conservation and management; and (2) that frequency of
[...] Read more.
We surveyed 579 recreationists regarding management of the threatened, beach-dwelling Hooded Plover Thinornis rubricollis. We postulated that: (1) lower awareness of the species and higher ‘inconvenience’ of management would engender less favourable perceptions of conservation and management; and (2) that frequency of beach use and dog ownership may mediate perceptions and levels of awareness and inconvenience. Overall, inconvenience was low while awareness and support for plover conservation were high. Education and awareness strategies were considered less effective than regulations; exclusion and regulations were considered less desirable than on-ground protective measures. Awareness, frequency of beach use and dog walking did not influence the perceived effectiveness of different managements. More frequent beach users had greater awareness of the species and their plight but reported greater inconvenience associated with management. Respondents with high awareness rated the severity of human-related threats higher; low awareness was associated with more inconvenience associated with on-ground protection, and exclusion and regulations. Dog walkers reported more inconvenience associated with exclusions and regulations than non-dog walkers. Dog walkers who used the beach infrequently rated threats significantly higher than frequent beach users. Conservation and education strategies could usefully be tailored to beach users’ level of use and pet ownership. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Wildlife Management)
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Open AccessArticle A Framework to Evaluate Wildlife Feeding in Research, Wildlife Management, Tourism and Recreation
Animals 2013, 3(4), 978-994; doi:10.3390/ani3040978
Received: 13 August 2013 / Revised: 27 September 2013 / Accepted: 27 September 2013 / Published: 11 October 2013
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (102 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Feeding of wildlife occurs in the context of research, wildlife management, tourism and in opportunistic ways. A review of examples shows that although feeding is often motivated by good intentions, it can lead to problems of public safety and conservation and be detrimental
[...] Read more.
Feeding of wildlife occurs in the context of research, wildlife management, tourism and in opportunistic ways. A review of examples shows that although feeding is often motivated by good intentions, it can lead to problems of public safety and conservation and be detrimental to the welfare of the animals. Examples from British Columbia illustrate the problems (nuisance animal activity, public safety risk) and consequences (culling, translocation) that often arise from uncontrolled feeding. Three features of wildlife feeding can be distinguished: the feasibility of control, the effects on conservation and the effects on animal welfare. An evaluative framework incorporating these three features was applied to examples of feeding from the literature. The cases of feeding for research and management purposes were generally found to be acceptable, while cases of feeding for tourism or opportunistic feeding were generally unacceptable. The framework should allow managers and policy-makers to distinguish acceptable from unacceptable forms of wildlife feeding as a basis for policy, public education and enforcement. Many harmful forms of wildlife feeding seem unlikely to change until they come to be seen as socially unacceptable. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Wildlife Management)
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Open AccessArticle Local Attitudes towards Bear Management after Illegal Feeding and Problem Bear Activity
Animals 2013, 3(3), 935-950; doi:10.3390/ani3030935
Received: 25 July 2013 / Revised: 5 September 2013 / Accepted: 5 September 2013 / Published: 12 September 2013
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (106 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The “pot bears” received international media attention in 2010 after police discovered the intentional feeding of over 20 black bears during the investigation of an alleged marijuana-growing operation in Christina Lake, British Columbia, Canada. A two-phase random digit dialing survey of the community
[...] Read more.
The “pot bears” received international media attention in 2010 after police discovered the intentional feeding of over 20 black bears during the investigation of an alleged marijuana-growing operation in Christina Lake, British Columbia, Canada. A two-phase random digit dialing survey of the community was conducted in 2011 to understand local perspectives on bear policy and management, before and after a summer of problem bear activity and government interventions. Of the 159 households surveyed in February 2011, most had neutral or positive attitudes towards bears in general, and supported the initial decision to feed the food-conditioned bears until the autumn hibernation. In contrast to wildlife experts however, most participants supported relocating the problem bears, or allowing them to remain in the area, ahead of killing; in part this arose from notions of fairness despite the acknowledged problems of relocation. Most locals were aware of the years of feeding but did not report it, evidently failing to see it as a serious form of harm, even after many bears had been killed. This underscores the importance of preventive action on wildlife feeding and the need to narrow the gap between public and expert opinion on the likely effects of relocation versus killing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Wildlife Management)
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Open AccessArticle Behavior and Characteristics of Sap-Feeding North Island kākā (Nestor meridionalis septentrionalis) in Wellington, New Zealand
Animals 2013, 3(3), 830-842; doi:10.3390/ani3030830
Received: 6 July 2013 / Revised: 12 August 2013 / Accepted: 12 August 2013 / Published: 16 August 2013
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (933 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The North Island kākā (Nestor meridionalis septentrionalis), a threatened New Zealand native parrot, was successfully reintroduced to an urban sanctuary in Wellington, New Zealand. Conflict has recently begun to emerge with Wellington City residents due to tree damage caused by kākā
[...] Read more.
The North Island kākā (Nestor meridionalis septentrionalis), a threatened New Zealand native parrot, was successfully reintroduced to an urban sanctuary in Wellington, New Zealand. Conflict has recently begun to emerge with Wellington City residents due to tree damage caused by kākā sap foraging. Little is known about sap foraging behavior of kākā, and this study aimed to gain a greater understanding of this behavior, and to test hypotheses that sap feeding is predominantly a female activity and that one technique, forming transverse gouges through bark, may be restricted to adult kākā. We used instantaneous scan sampling to record the behavior of kākā during 25 60–100 minute observation periods at Anderson Park, Wellington Botanic Garden, and during 13 opportunistic observations of sap feeding kākā in Wellington City. Forty-one observations of sap feeding were made of 21 individually-identified birds. Sap feeding birds were predominantly young and, based on estimated sex, females were no more likely to sap feed than males (exact binomial test p = 0.868). Twenty of the 21 identified sap feeding kākā utilized supplementary feeding stations at Zealandia-Karori Wildlife Sanctuary. Kākā were observed defending sap feeding sites from tui (Prosthemadera novaeseelandiae) and conspecifics. Sap appears to be an important resource for kākā across sexes and life stages, and provision of supplementary food is unlikely to reduce sap feeding and tree damage in Wellington City. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Wildlife Management)
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Open AccessArticle Swooping in the Suburbs; Parental Defence of an Abundant Aggressive Urban Bird against Humans
Animals 2013, 3(3), 754-766; doi:10.3390/ani3030754
Received: 26 June 2013 / Revised: 5 August 2013 / Accepted: 7 August 2013 / Published: 13 August 2013
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (115 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Masked Lapwings, Vanellus miles, often come into ‘conflict’ with humans, because they often breed in close proximity to humans and actively defend their ground nests through aggressive behaviour, which typically involves swooping. This study examined whether defensive responses differed when nesting birds
[...] Read more.
Masked Lapwings, Vanellus miles, often come into ‘conflict’ with humans, because they often breed in close proximity to humans and actively defend their ground nests through aggressive behaviour, which typically involves swooping. This study examined whether defensive responses differed when nesting birds were confronted with different human stimuli (‘pedestrian alone’ vs. ‘person pushing a lawn mower’ approaches to nests) and tested the effectiveness of a commonly used deterrent (mock eyes positioned on the top or back of a person’s head) on the defensive response. Masked Lapwings did not swoop closer to a person with a lawn mower compared with a pedestrian, but flushed closer and remained closer to the nest in the presence of a lawn mower. The presence of eye stickers decreased (pedestrians) and increased (lawn mowers) swooping behaviour. Masked Lapwings can discriminate between different human activities and adjust their defensive behaviour accordingly. We also conclude that the use of eye stickers is an effective method to mitigate the human-lapwing ‘conflict’ in some, but not all, circumstances. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Wildlife Management)
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