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A Critical Review of the use of Winter Severity Indices in the Management of Mule Deer in British Columbia Quayle, James
1991
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Abstract: Thesis Copyright J. Quayle, author. The Rocky Mountain mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus hemionus), one of three subspecies of black-tailed deer in B.C., at the extent of its northern range, living at the limit of environmental tolerance for winter weather in many areas. Winter severity indices based on climatic parameters have traditionally presented a means for assessing winter impact on ungulate populations to facilitate management. This paper examines the utility of these indices in the management of B.C.'s mule deer by comparing their scope of reality to ecological and management reality as shown in the literature. Mule deer wintering ecology is divided into the direct and indirect influences of winter weather. Three direct influences of winter are forage limitation, locomotory limitation and metabolic energy loss. Four indirect influences of winter are shelter availability, predation, disturbance and competition. Although none of these are climatic influences, the presence of each may intensify or relieve the stress of winter weather. All the influences of winter are interconnected and their impact on mule deer populations is dependent on their cumulative impacts. Indices have a long tradition of utility in wildlife management. The Quayle index is developed from a conceptual skeleton to a management tool based on monthly climatic data. Index values are produced over a 30 year time scale with data from Fort St. John and Kamloops. The Quayle index is validated through correlation with three statistically significant indices based on daily climatic data, through the use of frequency histograms based on index values, and by examining the magnitude of known severe winters. The index is used to determine harvest strategies for deer management areas (DMA's 6 through 14) of B.C. that contain mule deer. A conclusion reveals that the Quayle index is a "broad brush" approach and the large scale on which it is applied may cover many of its inadequacies...
 
Quayle, James. 1991. A Critical Review of the use of Winter Severity Indices in the Management of Mule Deer in British Columbia. author
 
Topic: Conservation + Mgmt (Wildlife, Fish, Plant)
Keywords: bc
ISSN:  Scientific Name: Odocoileus hemionus
ISBN:  English Name: Mule Deer
Other Identifier: thesis copyright James Quayle
 
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