Pacific Martens (Martes caurina) Use Structurally Complex Habitats in The Coastal Western Hemlock Ecosystems of Southern Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada

Posted on Nov 30, 2020


by Gilbert PROULX and NIGEL G. Buckland
CWBM 9 (2): 81-87.

Correspondence: Gilbert Proulx, Alpha Wildlife Research & Management Ltd., 229 Lilac Terrace, Sherwood Park, Alberta, T8H 1W3, Canada.



In Canada, little information exists on habitat use by Pacific martens (Martes caurina). In this study, we used remote video-cameras to study the distribution of the species in the Coastal Western Hemlock ecosystems of southern Vancouver Island. All video-cameras were set in May-June 2019 and February-March 2020. In 2019-2020, 32 video-cameras were functional. A total of 18 cameras (56%) in simple stands (6048 h of recording) and 14 (44%) in complex stands (4704 h of recording) recorded 26 and 38 independent Pacific marten visits, respectively. There was a significant difference (2= 6.0; df: 1; P<0.02) between observed and expected frequencies of Pacific marten recordings per stand type. There were significantly (t=3.2, P<0.05) more Pacific marten recordings/camera site in complex stands (𝑥 ̅=2.7 ±1.45) than in simple ones (𝑥 ̅=1.4 ±1.6). Our hypothesis that Pacific marten recordings will be significantly more frequent in stands with structural complexity than in simple stands with little or no structure was supported.

Key Words: British Columbia, Habitat, Martes caurina, Pacific Marten, Structurally Complex Forest, Vancouver Island.

4 - Proulx and Buckland


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