Spacing behavoir and habitat use of axis deer (Axis axis) in lowland Nepal
Document Type: Journal Article
Author(s): Stein R. Moe; Per Wegge
Publication Year: 1994

Cataloging Information

  • Axis axis
  • axis deer
  • fire
  • grass
  • grassland
  • habitat use
  • home range
  • Nepal
  • pyric herbivory
  • International
Record Maintained By:
Record Last Modified: November 12, 2015
FRAMES Record Number: 18008


A total of 17 axis deer (Axis axis) (12 females, 5 males) were radio-instrumented in Bardia National Park in lowland Nepal, and 1921 locations of females and 605 locations of males were obtained during the 2-year study period. Both the annual home ranges (135 ± 33 and 204 ± 38 (SD) ha for females and males, respectively) and the seasonal home ranges were quite small compared with those reported in another study in Nepal. We present evidence that this difference is due to a more fine-grained habitat mosaic in Bardia. Males used larger areas than females in the monsoon and the hot part of the dry season. The deer were sedentary, with a mean seasonal home range overlap between 49 and 86%, and seasonal occupancy centres were all located less than 1300 m apart. Mean seasonal home range size (68 and 110 ha for females and males, respectively) was smallest in the cool part of the dry season. The rutting period did not seem to have any major effect on the ranging behaviour, as neither males nor females increased home range size from the pre-rut to the rutting period. The deer used riverine forest preferentially during the cool-dry and hot-dry seasons, whereas sal forest was the preferred habitat during the monsoon and the cool-dry season. Grasslands were preferentially utilized by females at night during the hot-dry season, presumably because of improved forage quality following cutting and burning. Males were more associated with riverine and sal forest than were females, while females used grassland areas more than males did.

Online Link(s):
Moe, Stein R.; Wegge, Per. 1994. Spacing behavoir and habitat use of axis deer (Axis axis) in lowland Nepal. Canadian Journal of Zoology 72(10):1735-1744.