The effects of two different cattle grazing strategies on the abundance of meadow voles, Microtus pennsylvanicus, in northwestern Vermont

Ackerman-Leist, Philip
Meade Cadot
Department of Environmental Studies
This study compared the impact of two different pasture management strategies upon abundance of Microtus pennsylvanicus (meadow vole) in northwestern Vermont during October-November 1999. A mark-recapture sampling study compared Microtus pennsylvanicus abundances in a conventionally-managed pasture and a rotationally-managed pasture with similar site conditions. Six-hundred forty trapnights in each site yielded biomass weights significantly below threshold levels for habitat utilization by Microtus pennsylvanicus, thereby explaining the relatively low number of captures in both sites. Edge effect seemed to impact results in both sites, but most significantly in the conventional site. The hypothesis that Microtus pennsylvanicus abundances would be higher in the rotational site than in the conventional site was rejected.

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