Short Notes

Resting and denning sites of European mink in the northern Iberian Peninsula (Western Europe)


Abstract


We recorded resting and breeding sites used by the endangered European mink (Mustela lutreola) inhabiting Western Europe (Foral Community of Navarre). Over a sample size of 22 radio-tracked mink (10 adult females, 7 adult males, 2 young females, and 3 young males) between March 2007 and February 2009, we found that European mink mainly rested within brambles and reeds (39.7% for each type, n=156), regardless of seasons and age-sex classes. On average, the resting site re-use rate was 1.3 (range=1–4.3). Nine out of 10 breeding dens were located in lagoons or tributaries. The only one located along a main river course lost the litter due to flooding. Eight out of 10 breeding dens were in bramble patches. Thick and helophytic vegetation should be prioritised in management plans aimed at improving the conservation status of this species. Promoting this vegetation would favour adequate resting and breeding sites for European mink. A focus on improving vegetation around lagoons or tributaries can help to minimise flooding during the breeding period.

Keywords


conservation, Mustela lutreola, resting behaviour, space use

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4404/hystrix-28.1-12298

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Copyright (c) 2017 Francisco Palomares, Jose Vicente Lopez-Bao, Garbine Telletxea, Juan Carlos Ceña, Pascal Fournier, Gloria Giralda, Fermin Urra

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Hystrix, the Italian Journal of Mammalogy ISSN 1825-5272 (electronic version) 0394-1914 (printed version) Impact Factor (2016) 1.479, CiteScore (2016) 3.51.
Published by Associazione Teriologica Italiana
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Creative Commons LicenseWorks published in Hystrix are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.