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1.  Tigers Need Cover: Multi-Scale Occupancy Study of the Big Cat in Sumatran Forest and Plantation Landscapes 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(1):e30859.
The critically endangered Sumatran tiger (Panthera tigris sumatrae Pocock, 1929) is generally known as a forest-dependent animal. With large-scale conversion of forests into plantations, however, it is crucial for restoration efforts to understand to what extent tigers use modified habitats. We investigated tiger-habitat relationships at 2 spatial scales: occupancy across the landscape and habitat use within the home range. Across major landcover types in central Sumatra, we conducted systematic detection, non-detection sign surveys in 47, 17×17 km grid cells. Within each cell, we surveyed 40, 1-km transects and recorded tiger detections and habitat variables in 100 m segments totaling 1,857 km surveyed. We found that tigers strongly preferred forest and used plantations of acacia and oilpalm, far less than their availability. Tiger probability of occupancy covaried positively and strongly with altitude, positively with forest area, and negatively with distance-to-forest centroids. At the fine scale, probability of habitat use by tigers across landcover types covaried positively and strongly with understory cover and altitude, and negatively and strongly with human settlement. Within forest areas, tigers strongly preferred sites that are farther from water bodies, higher in altitude, farther from edge, and closer to centroid of large forest block; and strongly preferred sites with thicker understory cover, lower level of disturbance, higher altitude, and steeper slope. These results indicate that to thrive, tigers depend on the existence of large contiguous forest blocks, and that with adjustments in plantation management, tigers could use mosaics of plantations (as additional roaming zones), riparian forests (as corridors) and smaller forest patches (as stepping stones), potentially maintaining a metapopulation structure in fragmented landscapes. This study highlights the importance of a multi-spatial scale analysis and provides crucial information relevant to restoring tigers and other wildlife in forest and plantation landscapes through improvement in habitat extent, quality, and connectivity.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0030859
PMCID: PMC3264627  PMID: 22292063
2.  Threat of Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome to Field Biologists Working with Small Mammals 
Emerging Infectious Diseases  2007;13(9):1285-1287.
Field biologists should use personal protective equipment appropriate for their activities.
Low risk for hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS) has been reported among biologists engaged in fieldwork with rodents. The overall probability of acquiring HPS when working with rodents appears to be 1 in 1,412 (0.00071). Nonetheless, a causal link between HPS and lack of personal protective equipment (PPE) use is suggested by some investigators. However, supporting data are incomplete and consequently misleading. A recent HPS case was assumed to be acquired during rodent-handling activities, although substantial peridomestic exposure was evident. Regulatory groups interpret inadequate data as evidence of the need for rigorous PPE, which can hamper field research and instructional efforts. PPE recommendations should be reviewed and revised to match the risk associated with different types of fieldwork with small mammals.
doi:10.3201/eid1309.070445
PMCID: PMC2857298  PMID: 18252096
Hantavirus pulmonary syndrome; personal protective equipment; field biologists; Sin Nombre virus; synopsis

Results 1-2 (2)