Kato A., Oshida T., Nguyen S.T., Nguyen N.X., Luon H.V., Ha T.V., Truong B.Q., Endo H., Nguyen D.X. 2012. Nest box utility for arboreal small mammals in Vietnam’s tropical forest // Russian J. Theriol. Vol.10 (for 2011). No.2: 59–64 [in English].

Ami Kato, Laboratory of Wildlife Ecology, Obihiro University of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine, Obihiro 080-8555, Japan;

Tatsuo Oshida [oshidata@obihiro.ac.jp], Laboratory of Wildlife Biology, Obihiro University of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine, Obihiro 080-8555, Japan;

Son Truong Nguyen, Nghia Xuan Nguyen, Tue Van Ha and Dang Xuan Nguyen, Institute of Ecology and Biological Resources, Vietnamese Academy of Science and Technology, Hanoi, Vietnam;

Hao Van Luon and Bich Quang Truong, Cuc Phuong National Park, Nho Quan, Ninh Binh, Vietnam; Hideki Endo, The University Museum, The University of Tokyo, Tokyo 113-0033, Japan.

KEY WORDS: flying squirrel, rat, rainy season, dry season, competition, nest resource, nest material.

ABSTRACT. To test nest box utility in a Southeast Asian tropical forest, we set 30 wooden nest boxes on trees in the Cuc Phuong National Park, Vietnam for a year. During the rainy season, we checked each nest box each month in the daytime. We expected that arboreal rodents might be more likely to use the nest boxes as shelter from the heavy rain. During dry season, we additionally checked each nest box every two months. We expected that nest boxes would be used as a shelter from the rain by small arboreal mammals, such as rats and flying squirrels in the rainy season more than in the dry season. During the rainy season, we found ants, bees, and birds mainly nested the nest boxes for reproduction: bees in April; ants from May to August; and birds from April to June. From the late rainy season to the dry season, arboreal small mammals mainly used nest boxes: rats from August to February and flying squirrel in December. Nest resource competition between birds and rodents may be minimal since they use cavities in different seasons. Also, unlike our expectation, it was preliminary suggested that arboreal small rodents would use more frequently nest box in the dry season than in the rainy season.

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