J. A. Bissonette

A Track Plot System to Monitor Habitat Use

Difficulty in capturing a sufficient sample of white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) for a biotelemetry habitat use study led to the development of an alternative methOd using track plots. One-hundred 1 X 3 m plots/site were proportionately allocated by percentage area of distinct cover types, prior to random location in the 3 study areas. Results from 13 months of use indicated that the method was acceptable for monitoring habitat use patterns. Potential uses and problems are discussed. Comparisons with biotelemetry and direct observation data are made.

Estimates of White-Tailed Deer Activity Levels in Oklahoma

White-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) activity levels were estimated by track counts on 3 study sites in the Cross Timbers region of Oklahoma during 1978-79. An activity index (number of tracks/ day) was developed from repetitive readings of 100 track plots (1 X 3 m) per site. Significant differences (P < 0.05) in monthly activity levels were found. Within-month and between-month variability was influenced by land-use patterns, ambient temperature shifts, changes in food resource availability, and deer behavior patterns. A seasonal bimodal pattern was observed, with peaks during...