The level of secondary chemical compounds and palatability of birch (Betula) and willow (Salix) with varied historic levels of browsing pressure were examined in a series of experiments using free-ranging and captive Alaskan snowshoe (Lepus americanus) and Finnish mountain hares (L. timidus). Concentrations of secondary defensive compounds of birch and willow from four geographic regions (Alaska, Iceland, Siberia and Finland) were determined though chemical analysis. Preference for each species was determined through a series of feeding and garden trials with free ranging and captive hares in both Alaska and Finland.
Rangeland Ecology & Management
Get reliable science