Lahkar, D., Ahmed, M. F., Begum, R. H., Das, S. K., Lahkar, B. P., Sarma, H. K., & Harihar, A. (2018). Camera-trapping survey to assess diversity, distribution and photographic capture rate of terrestrial mammals in the aftermath of the ethnopolitical conflict in Manas National Park, Assam, India. Journal of Threatened Taxa, 10(8), 12008-12017. https://doi.org/10.11609/jott.4039.10.8.12008-12017
Information on the presence and distribution of species is crucial for conservation planning and management within a region.Â Documentation of species assemblages in Manas National Park (MNP) in the aftermath of conflict is critical for informed conservation interventions.Â For nearly two decades (1990â€“2010), conservation efforts in MNP were compromised by ethnoâˆ’political conflict.Â We conducted camera trapping surveys of terrestrial mammals across three administrative forest ranges (Panbari, Bansbari and Bhuyanpara) of MNP in 2017.Â A systematic survey with 118 trap locations accumulated data over 6,173 trap-days.Â We obtained 21,926 photographs of mammals belonging to 13 families and 25 species, of which 13 are threatened.Â We calculated photographic capture rate index (PCRI) using independent events.Â Trap specific PCRIâ€™s were used to map the spatial variation in capture rates.Â We observed variation in capture rate between Bansbari-Bhuyanpara where conflict ended in 2003 and has remained peaceful, and Panbari, a forest range where conflict ended later in 2016.Â Our results further indicate lower capture rates of mammalian prey species and small felids, but higher capture rates of four large carnivores in Panbari as opposed to Bansbari-Bhuyanpara.Â These results highlighted the fact that despite a history of ethno-political conflict in the region, although almost all mammalian species expected to occur in the park were detected and confirmed, present evidence indicated ethno-political conflict influences the distribution of several key species.Â In depth studies assessing mammalian prey densities, distribution and density are required to further understand the effects of conflict.