Great Basin Naturalist


In this study, mule deer population trend data (deer-days-use/hectare) were statistically analyzed with range area data that were extracted from LANDSAT satellite imagery. The remote sensing techniques developed use multidate, winter images of an area in central Utah. Snow-covered areas and vegetational areas mapped from the imagery were composited into 26 maps representing the approximate winter range available to mule deer on 26 dates over a five-year period (1972–1977). Utah State Division of Wildlife Resources pellet-group transect data were statistically analyzed with range data measured from the satellite imagery. Range area accounted for a fairly large proportion of the variation in deer-days-use/hectare (r = −.83). This result seems reasonable since deer population density should increase as available range decreases.