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A graph theoretic approach for modelling tiger corridor network in Central India-Eastern Ghats landscape complex, India
Shanu S., Idiculla J., Qureshi Q., Jhala Y., Aggarwal A., Dimri P.,
Published in Elsevier B.V.
Volume: 50
Pages: 76 - 85
Wildlife habitat corridors are components of landscapes, which facilitate the movement of organisms and processes between areas of intact habitat, and thus provide landscape corridor as well as serve as an ideal component to study and understand physiological ecology. Corridors are thus regions within a given landscape that generally comprise native vegetation, and connect otherwise fragmented, disconnected, non-contiguous wildlife habitat patches in the landscape. The purpose of designing corridors as a conservation strategy is primarily to counter, and to the extent possible, mitigate the impacts of habitat fragmentation and loss on the biodiversity of the landscape, as well as support continuance of land use for essential local and global economic activities in the region of reference. In this paper, we use game theory and graph theory to model and design a wildlife corridor in the Central India – Eastern Ghats landscape complex, with tiger (Panthera tigris tigris) as the focal species. We construct a graph using the habitat patches supporting wild tiger populations in the landscape complex as vertices and the possible paths between these vertices as edges. A cost matrix is constructed to indicate the cost incurred by the tiger for passage between the habitat patches in the landscape (based on Shelford's Law of Tolerance), by modelling a two-person Prisoner's Dilemma game. A minimum spanning tree is then obtained by employing Kruskal's algorithm, which would suggest a feasible tiger corridor network for the tiger population within the landscape complex. Additionally, analysis of the graph is done using various centrality measures, in order to identify and focus on potentially important habitat patches, and their potential community structure. Correlation analysis is performed on the centrality indices to draw out interesting trends in the network. © 2019 Elsevier B.V.
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Published in Elsevier B.V.
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