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Håff, Erik, 2010. Training identification tracking dogs (Canis familiaris) : evaluating the effect of novel trackdown training methods in real life situations. Second cycle, A1E. Umeå: SLU, Dept. of Wildlife, Fish and Environmental Studies

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Abstract

The challenge provided from recovering populations of group living ungulates and large predator populations puts the focus on the need to be able to find accidently wounded animals, from both traffic and hunting. Dog training for tracking down potentially wounded wildlife (“trackdown” hereafter) in Sweden has not changed much over the last hundred years although the species of wildlife has. There has been a large increase in numbers among wildlife that have a group living social structure (i.e. wild boar and fallow deer) over the last decade as well as an increase in the brown bear population and wolf population. Sweden has also issued licensed hunting for wolves, which has been highlighted in the international media. Because of the reasons mentioned above, the characteristics of trackdowns are if not changing then at least getting broader. To adjust to the new difficulties that the “new” species impose research is needed.

In this study I examined trackdowns performed by a number of dog handlers involved in the project, “Evaluation of novel methods for training scent-matching dogs to search for accidentally damaged game” (Swedish, Eftersöksprojektet). Two categories of dogs based on their type of training were compared, identification and traditionally trained. The id trained dogs succeeded with 92,3% of their traffic trackdowns compared to the traditionally trained dogs that succeeded with 72,4%. The id trained dogs also proved to have a lower total rate of injured animals that they could not find, id 3 out of 60 vs. traditional 25 out of 113. By using id training when training trackdown dogs we can improve the overall success in finding accidently injured wildlife and help meet the challenges that Sweden’s new wildlife species offer.

Main title:Training identification tracking dogs (Canis familiaris)
Subtitle:evaluating the effect of novel trackdown training methods in real life situations
Authors:Håff, Erik
Supervisor:Thulin, Carl-Gustaf and Håkansson, Mia
Examiner:Ball, John P
Series:Examensarbete i ämnet biologi
Volume/Sequential designation:2010:10
Year of Publication:2010
Level and depth descriptor:Second cycle, A1E
Student's programme affiliation:SY001 Forest Science - Master's Programme 300 HEC
Department:(S) > Dept. of Wildlife, Fish and Environmental Studies
Keywords:Trackdown, Dog training, Identification, Wildlife, Hunting, Traffic, Wildlife collision, Tracking, Dogs, Id
URN:NBN:urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-2-473
Permanent URL:
http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-2-473
Subjects:Nature conservation and land resources
Language:English
Deposited On:15 Sep 2010 08:07
Metadata Last Modified:20 Apr 2012 14:15

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