Differences of movement pattern between Asiatic wild ass (Equus hemionus) and Przewalski's horse (Equus ferus przewalskii)

Birgit Lugauer
2010 unpublished
Analysing animal movement reveals how animals interact with their environment and is necessary to understand their foraging behaviour. Due to landscape heterogeneity, species differences, various resource selection and physical features animals show various movement tactics. I analysed the GPS data of 6 Przewalski's horses and 3 Asiatic wild asses collected in the Mongolian Gobi from 2001 to 2007. Using the variables travel distance and turning angle I analysed individual datasets to look for
more » ... ssible species-specific (wild asses versus P-horses), area-specific (wild asses in the SE Gobi versus the SW Gobi) and management specific (established versus newly released P-horse groups) trends in movement strategies. Due to the small sample size of different individuals my focus was on a first qualitative assessment of movement strategies as a basis for future hypothesis testing. Species: Asiatic wild asses had home ranges from 4784 km² to 42776 km². Contrary to the Przewalski's horses, the Asiatic wild asses showed an almost linear relationship between the travel distance and the time interval between successive locations suggesting a high mobility. Mean daily distance travelled averaged 8451 m. The wild asses moved in larger turning angles than Przewalski's horses. Przewalski's horses covered home ranges from 290 km² to 1357 km² and located near watering places. Mean daily distance covered averaged 3177 m. The horses tended to be more resident because they preferred moving in turning angles less than 90°. The autocorrelation of travel distances and turning angles and the correlation between these parameters were not significantly stronger for wild asses than for wild horses. Area: No significant differences in travel distances were found between the 2 wild asses in the SE Gobi (range: 9646 m – 7606 m) and the wild ass in the Great Gobi B (8102 m) and also no noticeable differences in turning angles were detected between the animals in the SE (mean: 90,22°) and the ass in the SW (88,6°). The autocorrelation of daily t [...]
doi:10.25365/thesis.8685 fatcat:hb4amlvsrfb4lebzd547qmljhm