Tsunoda H. 2021. Human disturbances increase vigilance levels in sika deer (Cervus nippon): A preliminary observation by camera-trapping // Russian J. Theriol. Vol.20. No.1. P.59–69 [in English].

Hiroshi Tsunoda [tsunoda.hiroshi@pref.saitama.lg.jp], Center for Environmental Science in Saitama (CESS), Kamitanadare 914, Kazo, Saitama, 347-0115, Japan.

doi: 10.15298/rusjtheriol.20.1.07

ABSTRACT. Many deer species exhibit typical vigilance behavior as an anti-predator response to human disturbances. However, vigilance behavior in sika deer (Cervus nippon) has not previously been assessed. I explored whether human disturbances increase vigilance in sika deer by comparing their behaviors in two areas with different levels of human activity using camera-trapping techniques. The deer spent a significantly higher proportion of time exhibiting vigilance behavior in the site with higher levels of human activity, supporting my initial hypothesis. In addition, their vigilance increased in winter, possibly due to hunting by humans.

KEY WORDS: hunting, landscape of fear, non-lethal effect, predation risk, ungulates.

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