Identifying habitat patches and suitability for roe deer, Capreolus capreolus as a protected species in Iran

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Department of Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Natural Resources, University of Tehran, Karaj, Iran

2 Agriculture Biotechnology Research Institute of Iran (ABRII), Tehran, Iran

3 Department of Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Marine Natural Resources, Khorramshahr University of Marine Science and Technology, Khorramshahr, Iran


Species distribution models (SDMs) are a tool for the management of wildlife including the roe deer, Capreolus capreolus, as an elusive and national protected herbivore in Iran. Habitat suitability modeling can be one of the most important steps to protect this species. This study was carried out to evaluate the potential distribution of the roe deer in the north and northwest of Iran and to identify the important habitat patches for this species. The habitat suitability modeling was applied 95 presence points and nine environmental variables by MaxEnt®. Thereafter, we focused on the extraction of important habitat patches based on presence points. The land cover, as the most important variable on the habitat suitability model of roe deer and its highest probability presence, is classified as the high and moderate densities in the forest. Habitat patches covered an area of about 4467.81 km2 (i.e., 6.04%of the study area). The largest habitat patch, covering an area about 4022 km2, created a continuous patch in the east of the study area. There were several inter-connected small patches in the most western part of the study area in Arasbaran forests. Actually, Habitat patches should be taken into consideration in the conservation of the roe deer.


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