Vol. 2, Issue 6 (2017)
Habitat preference and forage selection by Himalayan Pika Ochotona roylei at high altitudinal zones of Chopta Tungnath, Western Himalaya
Author(s): SN Bahuguna, Ashish K Chowdhary, Siddhant Bhardwaj
Abstract: Himalayan Pika is an herbivore and selective forager. Selection of food by Himalayan Pika is influenced by different factors like food plant availability and how much abundant the food is, which in turn depends on soil fertility variables. Soil samples (0-15 cm) to (15- 30 cm) were collected from different altitudinal zones of study site. Various physical and chemical properties of soil were experimentally observed. Higher values of nutrients were found in soil samples of sub-alpine zone. Food plant abundance was recorded by Quadrat method. Mean plant density calculated for sub-alpine zone, timberline zone and alpine zone were 376.15, 290.00 and 310.8 (plants/m2) respectively. Food preference was observed by focal sampling and selection indices. Selection index for alpine habitat, timberline habitat and sub-alpine habitat were 0.78, 1.05 and 1.14 respectively. Higher values of forage ratio index for different species at sub-alpine habitat were found. Values of habitat selection index and forage ratio index indicate that most preferred habitat by Himalayan Pika was sub-alpine habitat.
Please use another browser.