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__National and Regional Climate Adaptation Science Centers
____FY 2014 Projects
_____Linking Mule Deer Migration to Spring Green-Up in Wyoming
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The Green Wave Hypothesis posits that herbivore migration manifests in response to waves of spring green-up (i.e., green-wave surfing). Nonetheless, empirical support for the Green Wave Hypothesis is mixed, and a framework for understanding variation in surfing is lacking. In a population of migratory mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus), 31% surfed plant phenology in spring as well as a theoretically perfect surfer, and 98% surfed better than random. Green-wave surfing varied among individuals, and was unrelated to age or energetic state. Instead, the greenscape, which we define as the order, rate, and duration of green-up along migratory routes, was the primary factor influencing surfing. Our results indicate that...