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Gewählte Master / Diploma Thesis:

Theresa Walter (2016): Fox observations in the city of Vienna using citizen science data: influence of land use and socioeconomics.
Master / Diploma Thesis - Institut für Zoologie, BOKU-Universität für Bodenkultur, pp 29. UB BOKU obvsg

Data Source: ZID Abstracts
The red fox (Vulpes vulpes L.) is one of the most widely distributed mammals in the world. Because of its adaptiveness it has also become a successful user of urban areas in recent years. Urban foxes can also be found in the city of Vienna (Austria), however, our knowledge about their occurrence and distribution is poor. Studying animal occurrence in cities poses different challenges to scientists, as covering the complex city area with common monitoring methods is often cost-intensive. Additionally, many habitats frequently favoured by animals are on private properties and therefore hardly accessible to scientists. Citizen science can bridge this gap in inaccessibility and enables scientists to have many eyes looking for evidence. In this thesis a data set of 1191 fox sightings collected between 2010 and 2015 is used to analyse observability of urban foxes and examine influence factors on human-fox encounters in Vienna. Human-fox encounters were reported throughout the year and at every hour of the day. Foxes were observed in all 23 districts of Vienna. Conditional probabilities were calculated to assess which land use classes enhance or prevent human-fox encounters. Gardens and areas with a low building density, as well as parks and squares favoured encounters with foxes, whereas agricultural areas, industrial areas and the forest constrained them. Influence factors on human-fox encounters were assessed using generalised linear models. Based on the fact that it takes two for a human-wildlife interaction – the fox and the observer – influence of land use classes as well as official socioeconomic parameters of the population of Vienna were taken into account. The results showed that socioeconomic information, e.g. education level, about citizen scientists is also important to explain human-fox encounters in an urban area.

Beurteilende(r): Zaller Johann
1.Mitwirkender: Heigl Florian

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