Contribution to the knowledge of Apodemus sylvaticus populations in forests of the managed landscape of southern Moravia (Czech Republic)

https://doi.org/10.17221/33/2008-JFSCitation:Suchomel J. (2008): Contribution to the knowledge of Apodemus sylvaticus populations in forests of the managed landscape of southern Moravia (Czech Republic). J. For. Sci., 54: 370-376.
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The population dynamics of wood mouse (Apodemus sylvaticus) was studied in three forest complexes differing in food supply in the intensively managed landscape of southern Moravia. They included an old semi-natural floodplain forest dominated by oak (HL), production broadleaved forest with the predominance of oak and robinia (HA) and a pheasantry with various forest stands consisting of diverse species and age categories of trees with a quantity of additional food for additional feeding of pheasants and roe deer (RB). The population fluctuation within six-year monitoring was affected by seed years (acorn crops in 2003 and 2006), which resulted in an increase in the species population density in the next year. Statistically significant effects of the crop of acorns on the body weight of monitored species were also detected (P < 0.01, F = 1.44). Relative abundance differed significantly between the floodplain forest (HL) and RB and HA (P < 0.01). The two last-mentioned sites did not differ and only a trend of greater preference to the most variable biotope in RB was noted. It evidences the unsuitability of floodplain forest for the species. In spite of the food specialization in small seeds significant effects of the excess crop of acorns can result in a rapid increase in the Apodemus sylvaticus population which can then cause damage to the natural regeneration of oak or artificial regeneration by seeding although to a substantially smaller extent than the more harmful A. flavicollis.
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