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1 March 2016 Local Ecotypes of Roe Deer Populations (Capreolus capreolus L.) in Relation to Morphometric Features and Fur Colouration in the Centre of the Iberian Peninsula
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Abstract

The extent of the area occupied by populations of roe deer and the diversity of environments in which it lives, determine the existence of different local forms or ecotypes. In order to characterize the populations of the Guadarrama Mountains in the centre of the Iberian Peninsula we examined the morphology and fur colouration of 154 roe deer (Capreolus capreolus) based on their body size, age and sex. To determine the age of roe deer, we analyzed tooth cementum layers (incisor I1) to observe the growth lines. The remaining individual data (body size, sex and fur colouration) were obtained in the field, from animals hunted in the study area. In adult individuals, the average body weight in males was significantly higher than in females, being these weight ranges similar to those of the Iberian Peninsula and the rest of Europe. Body measurements were positively related to individuals age, but only significant differences in body girth were found between males and females. The analysis of fur colouration of dead specimens showed a high variability with four different ecotypes during the summer coat and not significant differences were found in the body size between individuals with different summer coats. The morphological parameters described in the roe deer of the Guadarrama Mountains do not correspond with the latitudinal gradient as it was indicated for other Spanish populations. However, the existence of Pleistocene refuges in the central mountains of the Iberian Peninsula seems to have provided a high variety of ecotypes in relation to fur colouration in the populations of Guadarrama Mountains.

Fernando Horcajada-Sánchez and Isabel Barja "Local Ecotypes of Roe Deer Populations (Capreolus capreolus L.) in Relation to Morphometric Features and Fur Colouration in the Centre of the Iberian Peninsula," Polish Journal of Ecology 64(1), 113-124, (1 March 2016). https://doi.org/10.3161/15052249PJE2016.64.1.010
Published: 1 March 2016
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