Year of Award


Document Type

Professional Paper

Degree Type

Master of Science (MS)

Degree Name

Resource Conservation (International Conservation and Development)

Department or School/College

College of Forestry and Conservation

Committee Chair

Stephen Siebert

Commitee Members

Chris Servheen, Laurie Yung


core, Poland, wolf-human, core selection, wolf


University of Montana


The wolf populations in Europe are mostly divided between the largely undeveloped countries of Eastern Europe, and the more developed Western European nations. Poland holds a special importance as a geographical link joining these populations into one contiguous population. The territories of two wolf packs in southwestern Poland were examined through the collection of scat data. Core areas were then defined using fixed-kernel density estimation techniques and 50% isopleths. Habitat variables were then compared between core plots and non-core plots. Scat marking of both packs resembled the Hot Spots pattern of marking proposed by Zub et al. (2003), rather than the Olfactory Bowl pattern suggested by Peters and Mech (1975). Core plots in both territories were found to be located significantly farther from primary roads than non-core plots, while core plots in one territory were also located significantly farther from human built-up areas than non-core plots. No significant differences were found in forest cover, elevation, or road density between core and non-core plots. These findings suggest that in a region with high human densities and increased levels of human penetration into the forest, wolves may more intensely utilize areas that minimize their exposure to frequent human disturbances, while adapting to occasional disturbances.



© Copyright 2012 Nathan Alan Owens