Between 2000 and 2002 the home range, habitat selection and diet of foxes were examined in the Dandenong Creek Valley, Melbourne, Australia. The mean home range was 44.6 ha (range 19.2?152.6 ha). A significant selection towards blackberry and gorse used as diurnal shelter was found during the day with an active avoidance of less structurally complex vegetation types. Although there was obvious selection of certain habitats, the diet of the foxes was highly general and opportunistic and thus offers little potential as a factor to manipulate in order to reduce fox abundance. Given the strong preference for blackberry and gorse as a shelter resource, a habitat-manipulation strategy is suggested whereby patches of blackberry and gorse are removed and replaced with less structurally complex vegetation. Such a strategy has the potential to influence the density of foxes in semi-urban riparian environments such as those discussed in this study.
|Author||John G. White, Robert Gubiani, Nathalie Smallman, Kelly Snell and Anne Morton|
|Secondary title||Wildlife Research|
|Department||School of Life and Environmental Sciences|