Movement and habitat preference of radio tracked stoats, Mustela erminea, during summer in southern Quebec

We report observations on patterns of movement and habitat preference of eleven radiotracked stoats (n = 6 females and n = 5 males) during summer 1988 in southern Quebec. Duration of movement bouts and distance travelled by three adult males during May-June were significantly longer (p < 0.05) than for other individuals during June to August which was probably related to the search for mates by males. Radiotracked stoats moved at a speed ranging from 0.5 to 23.3 m/min, and average distance travelled daily was evaluated to 490 m approximately. Home range size (minimum convex polygon) was 35.3 ha:Fdr an adult male in June, 15.6 ha for an adult female during June to August, and 9.3 ha for a juvenile male in July-August. The adult female showed a preference to use brushwood piles inside a clear cut. The juvenile male prefered to use the edges of a stream and of many trails inside a conifer plantation. Predator avoidance and searching for preys may explain the habitat preference observed in the adult female and juvenile male. [References: 25] 25

Author C. Samson and M. Raymond
Year 1998
Secondary title Mammalia
Volume 62
Number 2
Pages 165-174