Prediction leopard (Panthera pardus saxicolor) habitat suitability in Kouh-e- Bafgh Protected Area

Document Type: Ecology

Authors

1 Departement of Environment, Faculty of Natural Resources, Yazd University, Yazd, Iran.

2 Departement of Watershed, Faculty of Natural Resources, Yazd University, Yazd, Iran

3 Environmental Department, Yazd University, PO Box: 741-89195

Abstract

Persian leopard (Panthera pardus saxicolor) is an endangered species that it’s population and distribution have decreased during last decades. Maximum Entropy (MaxEnt) approach that there is in MaxEnt software were used to and MaxEnt software for habitat suitability modeling of this species. Information layers were determined as the affecting variables on this species include the slope, aspect, elevation, forms of topography, vegetation, water resources, human development variables (villages and roads) and prey density. Results showed that 21.5 percent of this Protected Area were suitable for Leopard. Based on habitat suitability map, Persian Leopard preferred elevation range of 1400 to 2200 meters above sea level and 10 to 70 percent of slop. Furthermore variables of prey density, water sources (springs), uninhabited villages and mountainous areas are also important factors in the presence of this species. Results of model evaluation using the area under the curve (ROC= 0.982) showed that prediction of this model are much better than random condition. Leopard integrated suitable habitats, is in two regions of Orsestan and Panj Derakht that located mostly in Corn zone of this research area. The most suggestions of this research were 1) preventing of Gazoueie road establish in the core zone and suitable habitats of Leopard, and, 2) determining of corridors and movement routs of the species outside of the protected area in future studies.

Keywords


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