Title

The Effects of Human Visits on the Use of a Waterhole by Endangered Ungulates

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2006

Publication Source

Journal of Arid Environments

Volume

65

Issue

4

Inclusive pages

668-672

ISBN/ISSN

01401963

Peer Reviewed

yes

Abstract

We report the impacts of human visits at a waterhole used by mountain gazelles, Gazella gazella, and Nubian ibex, Capra ibex nubiana, in the Ibex Reserve of Saudi Arabia. Our hypothesis was that the species that normally used the waterhole during the day, the typical period of human visits, would be negatively affected. The results did not support our hypothesis, as both the diurnal mountain gazelles and partly nocturnal Nubian ibex avoided the waterhole within 6 h after human visits. We found no significant difference of waterhole use by Nubian ibex and mountain gazelles within the period of 6–12 h or 12–24 h after human visits. Given the high conservation concern of these species and the rarity of waterholes, we suggest that human visits continue to be regulated by allowing visits on non-consecutive days to give the ungulates opportunities to drink, especially during the summer and droughts when heat stresses are higher, animals are less tolerant of water deprivation, and there are less alternative waterholes.

Keywords

arid environments, desert ungulates

Disciplines

Medical Sciences

 
 

Link to Original Published Item

http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jaridenv.2005.08.007