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Diet analysis of David’s deer (Elaphurus davidianus) based on stable isotope technology


Zha, Jingjing; Wu, Yongbo; An, Yuting (2022), Diet analysis of David’s deer (Elaphurus davidianus) based on stable isotope technology, Dryad, Dataset,


Faecal stable isotopic analysis is now commonly used to investigate diets of mammal herbivores as samples are easy to obtain and reveal short-term dietary trends. In the Jiangsu Dafeng David’s Deer National Nature Reserve, supplemental feed has been provided year round for free-ranging deer (Elaphurus davidianus) to survive from food shortages. Plant species are isotopically distinct in the free-ranging area. We assessed the plant species utilization by deer under supplemental feed condition. Diet-faeces trophic shift of deer was obtained in the semi-captive area. Faeces in both areas were collected and faecal δ13C values revealed more variable diets of free-ranging deer than semi-captive deer in different months. Mixing model showed that C4 plants were important food source for free-ranging deer when supplemental feed was provided. We suggest that efficiency and impacts of long-term supplemental feed should be considered for degraded habitat restoration.


National Key Research and Development Program of China, Award: 2016YFC0502704

Jiangsu Biological Priority Academic Construction Project

iangsu Forestry Technological Innovation and Project Promotion, Award: LYKJ[2019]24