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Revista mexicana de ciencias forestales

versão impressa ISSN 2007-1132


PANDO MORENO, Marisela; REYNA, Laura; SCOTT, Laura  e  JURADO, Enrique. Characterization of soil in colonies of mexican prairie dogs (Cynomys mexicanus Merriam, 1892) in northeastern Mexico. Rev. mex. de cienc. forestales [online]. 2013, vol.4, n.17, pp.98-105. ISSN 2007-1132.

The Mexican prairie dog (Cynomys mexicanus) is endemic to northeastern Mexico and is one of the small mammals at risk of extinction. Despite numerous studies of the Mexican prairie dog, ecological data on the species are lacking, particularly regarding the relationship between the species and its habitat. Recent reports have pointed out that the halophytic grasslands of northeastern Mexico are suffering a process of degradation and show low productivity, as evidenced by changes in the structure and physiognomy of the landscape. However, although there is a recognized relationship between vegetation physiognomy and the subjacent substratum, there are no complete studies of the soil characteristics in colonies of prairie dogs. The hypothesize was stated that the Mexican prairie dog occupies different habitats that are indicated by different soil characteristics. This study analyzed the physical and chemical properties of soils from 36 colonies of Mexican prairie dogs located within the Mexican Plateau area. This information could permit the first definition of potentially appropriate areas for species reintroduction as a strategy for conservation. A principal component analysis was carried out on the soil data. Results showed that soils were divided into two broad groups that both provided habitat for the Mexican prairie dog: i) soils with high gypsum content and very low or null calcium carbonate, and ii) soils with a high content of calcium carbonate and lacking gypsum.

Palavras-chave : Cynomys mexicanus Merriam; 1892; habitat; halophytic grasslands; prairie dog; soils; gypsum.

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