Publications (FIS)

Which Large- and Medium-Sized Mammals Use Commercial Short-Rotation Coppice as Habitat?

authored by
Felix Zitzmann, Michael Reich

We surveyed occurrence and activity of large- and medium-sized mammals on six commercial mini-rotation short-rotation coppice (SRC) plantations in northern Germany by camera trapping in different seasons (winter, late summer). In total, eleven species (6–9 per site) were detected. This corresponds to the majority of mammal species occurring in the study region. Roe deer, wild boar and red fox were found across all sites. All other species were detected on fewer sites and some in only one of the seasons. Roe deer was the most active species both in terms of visit frequency (days with detection) and use intensity (detection numbers). With few exceptions on individual sites, all other species showed significantly lower activity. Number of detected species and activity of most of the species did not differ between seasons. Furthermore, there were no differences between near-edge and central areas of the crops with regard to the activity of the occurring species. Activity of individual species on different sites, however, differed considerably in some cases. Our results show that a wide range of mammal species are basically able to include SRC into their habitat utilisation. However, the sporadic use by most species indicates a rather limited current habitat value of the surveyed plantations. Options to increase the habitat value of SRC for mammals are suggested, but their effectiveness needs to be tested in future studies. Since the spatial and temporal scope of our study was limited and only SRC of a uniform age-class were considered, our results are not immediately applicable to other landscapes, seasons or types and management phases of SRC. Therefore, further research is required that considers these aspects as well as species-specific patterns of habitat selection in comparison to other habitat types.

Institute of Environmental Planning
Bioenergy Research
No. of pages
Publication date
Publication status
ASJC Scopus subject areas
Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment, Agronomy and Crop Science, Energy (miscellaneous)
Sustainable Development Goals
SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy
Electronic version(s) (Access: Open)