A time geographic approach for delineating areas of sustained wildlife use

Trisalyn Nelson, Jed Long, Karen Laberee, Benjamin Stewart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Geographic information systems (GIS) are widely used for mapping wildlife movement patterns, and observed wildlife locations are surrogates for inferring on wildlife movement and habitat selection. We present a new approach to mapping areas where wildlife exhibit sustained use, which we term slow movement areas (SMAs). Nested within the habitat selection concepts of home range and core areas, SMAs are an additional approach to identifying areas important for wildlife. Our method for delineating SMAs is demonstrated on a grizzly bear (Ursus arctos) case study examining road density. Our results showed that subadult females had significantly higher road densities within SMAs than in their potential path area home ranges. The lowest road density was found in the SMAs of adult male grizzly bears. Given increased mortality risks associated with roads, female encampment near roads may have negative conservation implications. The methods presented in this manuscript compliment recent developments to identify movement suspension and intensively exploited areas defined from wildlife telemetry data. SMA delineation is sensitive to missing data and best applied to telemetry data collected with a consistent resolution.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)81-90
Number of pages10
JournalAnnals of GIS
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • GPS telemetry
  • grizzly bear
  • potential path area
  • stopover ecology
  • time geography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)


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