Animal movement is fundamental for ecosystem functioning and species survival, yet the effects of the anthropogenic footprint on animal movements have not been estimated across species. Using a unique GPS-tracking database of 803 individuals across 57 species, we found that movements of mammals in areas with a comparatively high human footprint were on average one-half to one-third the extent of their movements in areas with a low human footprint.We attribute this reduction to behavioral changes of individual animals and to the exclusion of species with long-range movements from areas with higher human impact. Global loss of vagility alters a key ecological trait of animals that affects not only population persistence but also ecosystem processes such as predator-prey interactions, nutrient cycling, and disease transmission.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Supported by the Robert Bosch Foundation and additional funding sources (see supplementary text). The data reported in this paper are available at datadryad.org (doi: 10.5061/dryad. st350). M.A.T., T.M., K.B.-G., W.F.F., J.M.F., and B.V.M. conceived the manuscript; M.A.T. and T.M. conducted the analyses and wrote the first manuscript draft. Co-authors contributed data sets and assisted with writing the final version of the manuscript.
© 2017 The Authors.
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