Aging Sambar (Rusa unicolor) using Cementum Annuli and eruption and wear: implications for predicting populations

Watter, Kurt and Thomas, Elaine and White, Neil and Finch, Neal and Murray, Peter J. ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1143-1706 (2021) Aging Sambar (Rusa unicolor) using Cementum Annuli and eruption and wear: implications for predicting populations. Wildlife Society Bulletin, 45 (3). pp. 383-389. ISSN 0091-7648


Abstract

Sambar (Rusa unicolor), one of six introduced deer species to Australia, are poorly studied and declared vulnerable in their native range of India and southern Asia. In south-eastern Australia sambar are increasing in abundance and distribution despite commercial venison harvest and unlimited public hunting. The ability to accurately age individuals is important for management of cervid populations because many life history events are age dependent. The techniques most widely used to estimate the age of cervids involve tooth eruption and molar wear (EW), and interpretation of cementum annuli (CA) in incisors. Aging techniques based on teeth are influenced by diet, ingestion of soil, body condition and metabolic stressors such as disease and reproduction. We compared age estimation derived by both EW and CA techniques and applied age estimates from both techniques to lifetables and the Euler-Lotka equation to predict population growth. Sambar have CA that are discernible and correspond to mid-winter despite calving throughout the year in a temperate environment. Age estimation by eruption times of molar teeth appears reliable in sambar but estimation based on wear patterns of molar teeth is less accurate than CA. Assuming the accuracy of CA, aging by EW was less than 30% for sambar three years and older. For management purposes however estimation of rates of population growth using either the Euler-Lotka equation or a lifetable provided similar outputs using ages estimated by either CA or EW.


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to Published version in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Sciences (6 Sep 2019 - 31 Dec 2021)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Sciences (6 Sep 2019 - 31 Dec 2021)
Date Deposited: 26 Oct 2021 00:27
Last Modified: 21 Dec 2021 02:23
Uncontrolled Keywords: age, cementum annuli, eruption, population, Rusa unicolor, Sambar deer, teeth, wear
Fields of Research (2008): 05 Environmental Sciences > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050211 Wildlife and Habitat Management
05 Environmental Sciences > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050206 Environmental Monitoring
Fields of Research (2020): 41 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 4104 Environmental management > 410402 Environmental assessment and monitoring
41 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 4104 Environmental management > 410407 Wildlife and habitat management
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): D Environment > 96 Environment > 9608 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity > 960899 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity of Environments not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objectives (2020): 18 ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT > 1806 Terrestrial systems and management > 180699 Terrestrial systems and management not elsewhere classified
Identification Number or DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/wsb.1216
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/41773

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