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ŠUMARSKI LIST 9-10/2014 str. 31     <-- 31 -->        PDF

The study lasted for six hunting years – from 2004/2005. to 2009/2010. For this current study the data were taken from middle aged and mature stags (five and more years old). Total of 382 stags were measured. The value of antlers were observed through the following traits of red deer antlers: antler weight, total lenght of branches, lenght of tird tine and the number of tines. Hunting year 2007/2008. showed values of observed characteristics significantly higher than hunting years of 2004/2005., 2005/2006. and 2006/2007, as compared to hunting year of 2008/2009. and 2009/2010. observed values were not significantly higher but they were higer and that is in a biological sense equally important. The management measures were the same throught the years of research. Hydrological report showed that regular spring flooding of the Danube river failed in year 2007. and that was not the case during the other years of research. It would be normal that the average monthly temperature during the coldest months for this habitat was below zero but during the end of 2006. (November and December) and in the beginning of 2007. (Januar and Februar) the average temperature was from 2,9 to 8,4 °C above zero. That was the maximum temperature during the winter in 10 year period and that was winter with the least number of cold days (<0,0 °C) (35 days during these four months). Rainfall in the first three monts of 2007. were slightly above average (142 l) but during April and May the level of rain was up to three time lower in the relation to the other years of research. Number of days with snow was only two days during the coldest months of 2006. and 2007. and the height of snow cover for this two days was 1 cm. In the first five months during 2007. there were more sunshine hours than in other years of research, especially during the month of April when the growth and developement of antlers is most intense.
Based on the results presented in the text above the values of measured antler traits were highest in huntig year 2007/2008. and that was because of extremely favorable climatic and hydrological conditions in a significant time for antler growth and developement. The results from this research can be a guidance for future prediction of red deer antler developement in a sence of creating management measures.
Key words: Cervus elaphus, antlers, climate, hydrology, Baranja