African lion (Panthera leo) behavior, monitoring, and survival in human-dominated landscapes

Author(s)Stephanie Dolrenry
Year Published2013
JournalDissertation for Ph.D. in Environment and Resources at University of Wisconsin-Madison
Page Numbers i-112
Size1.90 MB

Chapter 1, "Demography of a persecuted African lion population," investigates the basic demographic characteristics of a lion population on human and livestock dominated lands where unregulated, retaliatory hunting of both sexes and all ages had occurred for centuries. I also examine the individual characteristics of stock-raiding lions.

Chapter 2, "Participatory monitoring of an elusive carnivore on community lands," I test the inclusion of local communities in wildlife monitoring and conservation, i.e. participatory monitoring, as a method for collecting data on large carnivores in human dominated landscapes. Standard wildlife biology methods that are effective in protected areas with large populations of 'tame' lions may be of limited use where carnivores are persecuted, often occur at low densities, and are elusive and nocturnal.

In chapter 3, "Lion occupancy of pastoral communities in Maasailand, Kenya," I apply a novel approach of multi-strata occupancy models on two spatial scales to test theories of large carnivore and human interactions, to understand the factors that determine whether or not lions use Maasai settlements and to elucidate factors which may inform management strategies to reduce lion incursions into pastoral settlement. Since persecuted carnivores are notoriously difficult to detect reliably, particularly when in proximity to human settlement, I also examine two detection methods to compare associated detection probabilities. I consider two site covariates, distance to protected area and density of homesteads, to predict lion occupancy of Maasai settlement.

Key Words: Lion, Panthera leo, prey selection, pastoral communities, human-wildlife conflict

Author: Stephanie Dolrenry

Journal: Dissertation for Ph.D. in Environment and Resources at University of Wisconsin-Madison 

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