Occurrence of Invasive Mammals and Native Carnivores in Northern Patagonia
Gantchoff, Mariela Gisele
AdvisorBelant, Jerrold L.
Martin, James A.
The study of biological invasions is important to management and conservation. I assessed the occurrence of invasive mammals and native mesocarnivores in northern Patagonia. Invasive species had varying responses to anthropogenic disturbance, and were differentially influenced by environmental and anthropogenic factors. Invasive species were also a substantial part of native mesocarnivores diets and appeared to influence their temporal activity, but not occupancy. Overall, I observed high spatial and temporal overlap between native carnivores and coexistence seemed facilitated by diet. Humans had both a positive and negative influence in this community, being responsible for the introduction of invasive species and possibly further facilitating their expansion, while also limiting other invasive species and potentially benefiting native species directly and indirectly. Undoubtedly, biological invasions, anthropogenic disturbance, and native communities can present complex interactions which will require further study to provide effective tools for protected areas.