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Author (up) Lovari, S., Ventimiglia, M., Minder, I. url  openurl
  Title Food habits of two leopard species, competition, climate change and upper treeline: a way to the decrease of an endangered species? Type Journal Article
  Year 2013 Publication Ethology Ecology & Evolution Abbreviated Journal  
  Volume 25 Issue 4 Pages 305-318  
  Keywords carnivore evolution, coexistence, sympatric species, diet, Panthera uncia, Panthera pardus.  
  Abstract For carnivore species, spatial avoidance is one of the evolutionary solutions to

coexist in an area, especially if food habits overlap and body sizes tend to coincide.

We reviewed the diets of two large cats of similar sizes, the endangered snow leopard

(Panthera uncia, 16 studies) and the near-threatened common leopard (Panthera par-

dus, 11 studies), in Asia. These cats share ca 10,000 km2 of their mountainous range,

although snow leopards tend to occur at a significantly higher altitude than common

leopards, the former being a cold-adapted species of open habitats, whereas the latter

is an ecologically flexible one, with a preference for woodland. The spectrum of prey

of common leopards was 2.5 times greater than that of snow leopards, with wild prey

being the staple for both species. Livestock rarely contributed much to the diet. When

the breadth of trophic niches was compared, overlap ranged from 0.83 (weight categories)

to one (main food categories). As these leopard species have approximately

the same size and comparable food habits, one can predict that competition will arise

when they live in sympatry. On mountains, climate change has been elevating the

upper forest limit, where both leopard species occur. This means a habitat increase

for common leopards and a substantial habitat reduction for snow leopards, whose

range is going to be squeezed between the forest and the barren rocky altitudes, with

medium- to long-term undesirable effects on the conservation of this endangered cat
 
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  Call Number SLN @ rakhee @ Serial 1403  
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