Movement patterns and activity of desert-adapted lions in Namibia - March 2009

Introduction
Results
> Sampling
> Activity Patterns
> Distances

The distance that a lion moves per night is a function of home range size and habitat use. Accurate information on this is important to the conservation process, and essential when developing tourism activities. On average the eight lions moved 10.3 km/night (Table 1). Male lions, however, moved longer distances per night (x = 11.7 km, SE = 0.39) than did lionesses (x = 8.6, SE = 0.28, t = -6.28, P < 0.001, Figure 3).

Figure 3. Average distances travelled per night (24-hours) by eight lions lions (Males / Females) fitted with GPS radio collars in the northern Namib (error bars = standard error)

The range of the distances travelled by lions per night was large (0 – 55 km, Table 1). This is true, in part, because lions, when feeding on a large prey animal may not move for several days (range: 1 – 12 days). But when they have not been successful they would move with increasing intensity until they succeed. It was therefore necessary to separate the data into six distance categories (<1km, 1-5km, 6-10km, 11-15km, 16-20km, >20km, Figure 4). Interestingly, the lions moved less than 5 km/night on 42% of the total sample of 1381 nights. Male lions appeared to move <1km & >20km/night more often than did female lions (Figure 4). When the data were further separated into only three distance classes (<5km, 5-15km, >15km, Figure 5) the pattern became clear. Both sexes moved <5 km/night at the same frequency, but lionesses moved more often between 6 and 15 km/night, than did males, and males regularly moved >15 km/night (Chi sqr = 64.1, d.f. = 2, P < 0.001 ). This discrepancy explains the difference between and the mean distances travelled by males and females.

Figure 4. The proportion of distances travelled per night (24-hours) in six distance categories by eight lions fitted with GPS radio collars in the northern Namib. Figure 5. The proportion of distances travelled per night (24-hours) in three distance categories by male and female lions fitted with GPS radio collars in the northern Namib.

> Home Ranges
> Movement Patterns
>>>Time Frequencies
>>>Spider Analysis
>>>Circular Statistics
>>>Quarter Degree Squares