A low altitude forest dwelling Pyrenean chamois population increases the potential habitat of this subspecies

Keywords: expansion, potential habitat, global warming, wild ungulates, Rupicapra p. pyrenaica


Aim of the study: To demonstrate if a population of Pyrenean chamois Rupicapra p. pyrenaica can live at low altitudes all year long. This could enlarge dramatically its potential habitat.

Area of study: A hunting ground in Sobrarbe County, Pyrenees, Spain, in 2022.

Material and methods. We interviewed local hunters to find out when the presence of the subspecies in the area dates back. We performed block counts from April to December in the target area for calculating the size of the population.

Main results: There was a presence of at least 15 years of the subspecies living at 600 m asl. The population was at least 18 animals, reproduces, and shows a normal demographic structure of kids, yearlings, adult females, and adult males.

Research highlights: Low-altitude chamois populations living in forests could be a result of important ecological changes in high mountain pastures producing migrations to newly suitable areas as low-altitude forests. The potential habitat of the subspecies should be broadened.


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How to Cite
HERRERO, J., GARCÍA-SERRANO, A., FÉLEZ, C., HERRERO, F., MACHUCA, A., PONZ, B., & SANCHO, S. (2023). A low altitude forest dwelling Pyrenean chamois population increases the potential habitat of this subspecies. Forest Systems, 32(3), eSC03. https://doi.org/10.5424/fs/2023323-20521
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