Population dynamics of the Kaminuriak caribou herd, 1968 - 1985
AbstractThe Kaminuraik caribou herd apparently declined from about 120 000 animals in 1950 to 63 000 in 1968. Beginning in 1968 documentation of herd trend was based on the estimate of the number of breeding (pregnant and post-partum) females on the calving ground during the birth peak. It appeared as if we understood the basic population processes responsible for the decline when we correctly predicted a drop from 14 800 breeding females in 1977 to 13 000 in 1980. However a three-fold increase, to 41 000 breeding females in 1982, and continued growth thereafter, was unanticipated. Most of that increase must have resulted from an immigration of cows to the herd's traditional calving ground around Kaminuriak Lake, although increased birth rates, and increased survival rates also contributed to herd growth. Immigrant cows probably came from the northeastern mainland of the NWT
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