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Distribution, morphology and use of arctic fox dens in Sweden
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Zoology.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Zoology.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Zoology.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-5496-4727
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2002 (English)In: Wildlife Biology, Vol. 8, no 3, 185-192 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Seventy-seven arctic fox dens in Vindelfjällen, Northern Sweden, are described with regard to distribution, morphology and fox use. The density of dens in the area was 1 den / 21 km2 and dens were more spaced than random. The dens were situated at a mean altitude ( sd) of 915  74 m.a.s.l., were on average 3.5  1.88 km from nearest tree line, had a mean number of 44  32 den openings and a mean area of 277  237 m2. During the 21 year study period, 31 dens were used by arctic foxes and 10 by red foxes. Number of den openings, den area, altitude and distance to nearest tree line explained 36 % of arctic fox den use (p < 0.001) and 21 % of red foxes use of arctic fox dens during the study period (p = 0.01). Arctic foxes used dens at higher altitude (p = 0.03) and further away from forest than red foxes did (p = 0.03), and tended to breed in dens with more den openings (p = 0.08). Arctic foxes used some breeding dens more frequently than others (p = 0.002). Among the breeding dens, both den use and litter size were positively related to den area (den use: p = 0.04; litter size: p < 0.001). Successful breeding dens for arctic foxes in Sweden thus appear to be characterised by large size and many openings, and they are situated far away from forest at relatively high altitudes.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2002. Vol. 8, no 3, 185-192 p.
Keyword [en]
Alopex lagopus, Fennoscandia, interspecific competition, red fox, Vulpes vulpes
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Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-19843ISI: 000178335300004OAI: diva2:186367

ISI Document Delivery No.: 599LD Times Cited: 3 Cited Reference Count: 39

Available from: 2007-11-19 Created: 2007-11-19 Last updated: 2014-10-13Bibliographically approved

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Elmhagen, BodilAngerbjörn, Anders
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