Claudia R Pighetti; University of Nevada, Reno;; Danielle Miles, Dr. Kevin T Shoemaker

Removal of pinyon-juniper woodland by land management agencies in northern Nevada raises questions about how populations of wildlife occupying these woodlands are utilizing habitats around these removal sites. Using Wildlife Acoustics SM4 passive recorders, we have monitored wild coyote (Canis latrans) pack activity near conifer removal sites between 2017 and 2020. However, estimates of species occurrence using novel methods need to be validated. To improve our previous triangulation estimates of coyote pack locations, we recorded temporarily housed coyotes at Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care. We established an array of 9 recorders from 0 to 300 m away and measured the loudest decibel strength of howls by distance using RavenPro sound visualization software. Across 200 sound files of wild coyotes with unknown true locations, we found a maximum decibel strength of 108.5dB and a minimum of 41.4dB, while howls over 114 dB were recorded for captive coyotes at 0 m. Here, we demonstrate the improved accuracy of triangulation from the inclusion of validated coyote locations and use these methods to summarize coyote activity around conifer removal sites. Moving forward, we will use satellite NAIP imagery to analyze what types of habitat coyotes are using in and around tree removal sites.

Wildlife and Technology - Analysis Tools   Student Paper Zoom Presentation