Changes in the occurrence and population trend of the eurasian otter (Lutra lutra) in hungary between 1990 and 2006

Miklós Heltai, Éva A. Bauer-Haáz, Róbert Lehoczki, József Lanszki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In order to determine the distribution of the Eurasian otter (Lutra lutra) in Hungary and to monitor the changes in population trend, a questionnaire survey was sent out to Hungarian game management units (GMUs) to complete between 1990 and 2006. The reliability of data coming from questionnaires was tested by field survey in 92 areas of 10×10 km UTM cells. Both the mean response rate and the mean area covered by responses was 42.4%. The otter population of Hungary might be considered to be stable. The otter distribution area was found to be wide (approximately 72.000 km2, i.e. 77.5% of Hungary) and populations were probably inter-connected; however, fewer occurrences were found in mountain areas and in dry plains with little wetland. Distribution (permanent, occasional or negative presence of otter in different years) was found to be constant. According to the questionnaire answers, the professional hunters seemed to slightly underestimate the occurrence of the otter, which is strictly protected, but otherwise their responses were reliable and usable. In order to conserve the otter and its aquatic habitats a standardized survey needs to be established as soon as possible.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)112-118
Number of pages7
JournalNorth-Western Journal of Zoology
Volume8
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2012

Keywords

  • Density
  • Field test
  • Mail questionnaire survey
  • Occurrence
  • Population trend

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology

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