Faculty of Biology, University of Latvia
Hard copy: ISSN 1691–8088
On-line: ISSN 2255–9582
Acta Univ Latv (2009) 753: 7–18
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Environmental and

Acta Univ Latv (2009) 753: 7–18

Orginal Article

The use of nest boxes to survey marginally distributed Fat dormouse Glis glis in Latvia

Valdis Pilāts1*, Digna Pilāte2, Ilze Dzalba1
1Gauja National Park Administration, Baznīcas 3, Sigulda LV-2150, Latvia
2Institute of Systematic Biology, Daugavpils University, Vienības13, Daugavpils LV-5401, Latvia
*Corresponding author, E-mail: valdis.pilats@daba.gov.lv


The use of nest boxes in different studies of arboreal mammals, such as dormouse, is a widely accepted method. We examined the use of this method to survey a marginal population of Fat dormouse (Glis glis) living in a mixed, oldgrowth broadleaf forest in Gauja National Park. A total of 104 nest boxes and 15 nest tubes designed for dormice were set up in five study sites: both in areas with potential dormice presence and where likelihood of presence was only theoretical. Nest boxes were readily used by G. glis in two study sites. During a four-year period we obtained preliminary results also on dynamics of nest box use, habitat preferences, relative abundance and reproduction of G. glis living in the most northern part of the range. Altogether 41 dormice including 35 juveniles were captured. G. glis showed clear preference to areas with oldgrowth oaks having wide canopies. In this habitat type the abundance of G. glis was estimated to be two individuals per ha or 20 individuals per 100 nest boxes. Nevertheless, the species proved to be rare in Gauja National Park, probably due to scatter and isolation of suitable habitats.

Key words: Glis glis, marginal population, nest boxes, relative abundance, Latvia.

Acta Univ Latv (2009) 753: 7–18
 DOI: http://doi.org/10.22364/eeb

Prof. Gederts Ievinsh
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University of Latvia

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