The aim of this project is to establish an integrative eco-physiological approach across scales from local to continental, to predict functional connectivity for wild felids. The project’s specific goals are a) to determine the proximate mechanisms driving dispersal pulses from core to peripheral populations of wild felids, b) to investigate how climate and anthropogenic habitat fragmentation can influence the genetic structure and eco-evolution of these species, and c) to identify how local scale processes translate into large-scale patterns of species distributions.
The outgoing phase (2015-2016) of CONTRASST was developed at the Biology Department, Trent University (ON, Canada). All objectives defined for the outgoing phase were achieved, as well as the respective milestones and deliverables, as follows:
- Lynx eco-physiological data in North America integrated into a database (October 2015).
- Submitted report to the Fur industry and the Ontario provincial government on the summary of the collaboration established between NAFA, Trent University and the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry since 2009 (November 2015).
- Creation of the Fur Repository at Trent (December 2015).
- Creation of a shared Fur Repository database between three labs at Trent (Wilson Lab, Bowman Lab and Murray Lab; May 2016).
- Integration of North America eco-physiological data with environmental data and maps, including maps of drivers (e.g., human density, roads, etc.) to enable the spatial analyses (June 2016).
- Publication of six scientific papers and submission of five more (throughout 2015-2016).
- Submitted midterm report to the European Commission (February 2016).
- Submitted Periodic report to the European Commission (February 2017).