Lynam, Antony J., Jenks, Kate E., Tantipisanuh, Naruemon, Chutipong, Wanlop, Ngoprasert, Dusit, Gale, George A., Steinmetz, Robert, Sukmasuang, Ronglarp, Bhumpakphan, Naris, Grassman, Lon I., Jr., Cutter, Passanan, Kitamura, Shumpei, Reed, David H., Baker, Megan C., McShea, William J., Songsasen, Nucharin, and Leimgruber, Peter. 2013. "Terrestrial Activity Patterns of Wild Cats from Camera-Trapping." Raffles Bulletin of Zoology 61 (1):407-415.
The behaviour of wild cats is poorly understood. Using camera-trapping, we quantifi ed temporal overlap among seven species of Asian wild cats, including tiger Panthera tigris and leopard Panthera pardus. Based on time stamp data from 780 camera-traps and 24 study sites from 14 protected areas across Thailand, we assessed terrestrial activity patterns and temporal overlap in habitat use. For quantifying overlap, we used a coeffi cient estimator (Delta) over cap (1) that allows for calculation of confi dence intervals. Our study provided insight into temporal interactions among species of wild cats, particularly between small cats and their larger cat relatives. We found temporal habitat segregation in several small cats with some species being strongly nocturnal (>= 85% records between 1800 and 0600 hours - leopard cat Prionailurus bengalensis), mostly (>50%) nocturnal (clouded leopard Neofelis nebulosa), mostly diurnal (>50% records between 0600 and 1800 hours - Asiatic golden cat Catopuma temminckii), or strongly (>= 85%) diurnal (marbled cat Pardofelis marmorata). We found high temporal overlap ((Delta) over cap >= 0.80) between leopard cat and clouded leopard (95% CI = 0.77-0.91), Asiatic golden cat and leopard (95% CI = 0.69-0.87), Asiatic golden cat and tiger (95% CI = 0.72-0.90), and clouded leopard and tiger (95% CI = 0.69-0.85). Our research demonstrates that temporal habitat or niche segregation may be an important process in maintaining the functioning of diverse predator guilds in tropical forests. We developed several avoidance or overlap hypotheses that can explain the patterns observed in our study and that should be further tested.