Accessible Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter May 7, 2020

Dhole Cuon alpinus in Satchari National Park: on the first verifiable evidence from northeast Bangladesh

Tania Zakir ORCID logo, Harish Debbarma and Muntasir Akash ORCID logo
From the journal Mammalia

Abstract

The distribution range of the globally Endangered dhole Cuon alpinus overlaps mixed evergreen mid-hill forests of northeastern Bangladesh but lacks any authentic documentation. With the first evidence from this region, we observed the activity pattern of dhole, of its prey and of human activities in Satchari National Park, a part of a larger northeastern forested area, Raghunandan Hill Reserve Forest – the northernmost fringe of the Baramura Hills of India. We obtained 32 photos of solitary individuals on eight different events from six out of 587 camera trap days. Naïve occupancy estimate for dhole was 0.41 with a detection probability of 0.65. We identified two individuals, and reported five predation events. We encountered a moderately high temporal overlap of dhole activity with that of barking deer (∆̂1 = 0.65, CI = 0.42–0.83), human activity (0.63, 0.38–0.89), and livestock movement (0.59, 0.38–0.89). Given that dhole is a diurnal hyper-carnivore, illegal logging and tourism pressure appeared as major disturbances to the species' existence in the park. Habitats of northeastern protected forests, their adjacency with hill ranges of Tripura, and dhole being a habitat generalist, we conjecture its presence in the entire region and recommend thorough camera-trapping efforts.


Corresponding author: Muntasir Akash, Department of Zoology, University of Dhaka, Dhaka, 1000, Bangladesh, E-mail:

Funding source: Ministry of Science and Technology, Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh

Funding source: WildTeam

Acknowledgements

We express our gratitude to Bangladesh Forest Department for granting permission to conduct the survey in SNP. This work was funded by the WildTeam and the Ministry of Science and Technology, Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh, both were for Tania Zakir to pursue her MSc thesis research. We received equipment assistance and technical support from WildTeam. Thanks to Mizanur Rahman, Fatema Tuz Zahura, Rafia Mahjabin and Zaber Khan for companionship during the field work and to the people of SNP who helped us on several occasions. We are also grateful to Dr Jan Kamler, Dr Kashimra Kakati, Dr Anwaruddin Choudhury and Dr William Duckworth for their invaluable insights into the distribution of dhole in northeast India.

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Supplementary Material

The online version of this article offers supplementary material (https://doi.org/10.1515/mammalia-2019-0050).

Received: 2019-05-14
Accepted: 2020-03-20
Published Online: 2020-05-07
Published in Print: 2020-11-26

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