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Bokhina О. D. Abundance Dynamics of European Badger (Meles meles L.) in the Saratov River Bank for 2011–2018. Izvestiya of Saratov University. Chemistry. Biology. Ecology, 2020, vol. 20, iss. 1, pp. 109-114. DOI:

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Abundance Dynamics of European Badger (Meles meles L.) in the Saratov River Bank for 2011–2018


European badger Meles meles (Linnaeus, 1758) – is the largest representative of the marten family in the European part of Russia. The eastern part of the range of the European subspecies M. meles meles, which was the study area, is confined to the Saratov Right Bank. The site is characterized by a variety of biotopic, orographic and anthropogenic conditions that affect the number of badgers, their spatial distribution over the territory and population structure. The article analyzes the number of European badgers that live on the territory of the Saratov Right Bank. The average number of badger in the administrative borders of the Saratov region on the territory of the Right Bank for 8 years amounted to 2676 individuals (max = 2971 in 2014; min = 2341 in 2018). The distribution of badger individuals in the populations within the considered territory is uneven, the average density of 6.25 individuals per 100 km2 (0.05 individuals / km2). Since 2014, the number of animals has tended to decrease and is reduced, on average, by 157.5 individuals/year. To a lesser extent, this applies to areas with a large number of ravines, gullies, and well-drained soils. In the study area, 4 types of family were distinguished, among which were group, polygynous, monogamous and incomplete. The most common was the polygynous type of relationship, which was found in 49% of groups. The main reasons for the reduction in badger numbers in the Saratov Right Bank are related to the destruction of habitats suitable for animals, poaching and death on the roads.


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