Observations of the seasonal dietary preference of male Gazella subgutturosa maraca Thomas, 1897 (Cetartiodactyla: Bovidae) along foraging trails of central Saudi Arabia

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P.L. Cunningham


Seasonal dietary preferences of male Arabian Sand Gazelle were determined using direct observations of vegetation utilised along foraging trails in central Saudi Arabia. Twenty-one different plant species from 12 different families were identified as food items, of which six species have not previously been recorded in the diet from Saudi Arabia. The importance of forbs in the diet was confirmed with species selected throughout the year with the highest relative frequency of use including Farsetia stylosa, Convolvulus lanatus and Neurada procumbens. Knowledge of the diet and food preference is important for protected area managers.

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Author Biography

P.L. Cunningham

Peter Cunningham is an ecologist for the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) at the King Khalid Wildlife Research Centre at Thumamah, north of Riyadh in Saudi Arabia, studying the feeding ecology of Sand Gazelle in protected areas as well as assisting with the management of the species.