Locating Potential Cougar (Puma concolor) Relocation Sites along

Initial Project Goals and Plans in
Preparation for 2014 AAG
Annual Meeting
Dr. Rebecca Lewison & Jennifer Feltner
Biology Department
Next 1-2 years
• Conduct a pilot test using
cameras/occupancy modeling
• Write a short paper on results from
pilot test and applicability to other
primate species
• Complete coursework at SDSU/UC
Davis by Spring 2015
• Launch full-time field work and data
Photo by Xi Zhinong
Next ~ 5 years
• Complete data collection/analyses
• Publish several papers
– My findings for occupancy and
habitat suitability modeling
– Survey techniques for
monitoring primates
– Contribute to papers produced
by other PIs/grad students on
CNH project
– Popular article on crossdisciplinary collaborations in
Photo by Xi Zhinong
Current Research Objectives:
1)Apply a multi-season occupancy model to
investigate ecological and anthropogenic factors
affecting monkey distribution and habitat use
2)Construct a spatially explicit co-occurrence and
habitat suitability model to characterize patterns of
monkey and human space/resource overlap
3)Evaluate the effectiveness of PES as a conservation
tool for monkeys
Data Needs:
I plan to collect/gather data on monkey occupancy and distribution and
the following environmental and anthropogenic covariates: vegetation
type, canopy cover, elevation/slope/aspect, food resources, human
activities, distance to roads, major villages and tourist areas, distance to
farmland and PES parcels
Data I will collect
• Camera Trap Images
- Monkey use/occupancy
- Human use
- Other species
• Vegetation Sampling
- Microhabitat (5x5m) vegetation plot
sampling at each camera station: vertical
structure, canopy cover, tree dbh,
understory density, stand density
- Additional vegetation sampling, using
plots, line transects, or other survey
methods especially to ID/locate important
monkey food resources
• Line transects or other survey methods to
collect human use, disturbance data
• Locations of roads, major villages and tourist
areas, distance to farmland and PES parcels
Data I will need from others
• Remote Sensing data
– Vegetation sampling from 210 plots (dominant plant species
compositions and percent cover, etc.)
– Land cover classification/vegetation type (currently 7 types)
– Canopy fractional cover
• Participatory mapping
– GPS points of homes, villages, resource collection, community
forests, etc.
– If available info on what resources are exacted (buds, wood,
• Stakeholder Survey
– GPS locations of resource collection activities or households that
list resource extraction as their livelihood
• Locations of PES parcels – do we have this?
• Locations of important monkey food trees – does FNNR have this?
Potential timeline for doing fieldwork
Feb/March 2014 Trip Goals
• Get familiar with landscape, terrain, habitat
• Test 3-4 cameras in field
• Befriend Niu; establish grounds for data-sharing by bringing an image
sorting database, sound-triggered sensing device/camera, etc
• Assist remote sensing team; learn vegetation sampling techniques
2014/2015 School Year
• Currently unsure if taking a quarter off from the UC Davis will be an
option given course requirements I need to fulfill in order to advance
to candidacy
• If possible, would like to conduct a short pilot test over winter and/or
spring breaks – install cameras in December 2014 – pull in March 2015.
2015/2016 School Year
• Latest for beginning full-time field work – hope to stay in China for
extended period of time: 9-12 months
Photo by Cyril Ruoso