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Data from: Land‐sharing potential of large carnivores in human‐modified landscapes of western India

Citation

Majgaonkar, Iravatee M. et al. (2019), Data from: Land‐sharing potential of large carnivores in human‐modified landscapes of western India, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.qs13nt1

Abstract

The current Protected Area (PA)network is not sufficient to ensure long-term persistence of wide-ranging carnivore populations.Within India, this is particularly the case for species that inhabit non-forested areas since PAs disproportionately over-represent forested ecosystems. With growing consideration of human-use landscapes as potential habitats for adaptable large carnivores, India provides a model for studying them in densely populated landscapes, where there is little understanding about human-carnivore interactions in shared spaces. Using key informant interviews and an occupancy modeling framework, we assessed the distribution of three large carnivore species, the leopard Panthera pardus, Indian grey wolf Canis lupus pallipes and striped hyena Hyaena hyaena, across a ~89,000 km2 semi-arid multi-use landscape in western India, and quantified ecological drivers of their presence.The three species occupied 57% (leopard), 64% (wolf) and 75% (hyena) of the landscape of which only 2.6% area is protected as national parks or wildlife sanctuaries. Presence of the three carnivores was differentially favored by certain types of agriculture,while populations of domestic livestock supported them in this landscape with low densities of large wild prey. Our results demonstrate the adaptability of large carnivores in human-modified landscapes and we call for an expansion of the current conservation narratives which currently focus on forested protected areas,to include the high potential that anthropogenic landscapes offer as habitats where people and predators can co-adapt and persist.

Usage Notes

Location

Maharashtra state in India