Wildlife Management Terms - P

PrPC: abbreviation for the cellular prion proteins, the normal host prion proteins from which the CWD-causing prions are derived

PrPCWD: abbreviation for the malformed proteins called prions that are believed to cause CWD 

Palustrine: vegetated wetlands and small, shallow ponds like marshes, swamps, fens, and bogs

Panther: tawny colored, four legged mammal with a long tail, in the cat family. Panthers are nocturnal (night feeding) predators, eating deer, hogs, raccoons etc. Florida panthers are an endangered species, becoming rare due to habitat loss and as they were extensively hunted at one time. Each panther requires 150 - 250 square miles of territory

Parasite: organism that lives by deriving benefit (usually doing harm) from another organism

Passerine: birds of the order Passeriformes, which include perching birds and songbirds such as the jays, blackbirds, finches, warblers, and sparrows

Pathogen: microorganism that can cause disease 

Pawing: act of a buck using it's front hooves to remove dirt and grass to make a scrape during the rut

Pedicals: part of the bucks skull where antlers grow from. Present as a juvenile, even male fawns have pedicals but are difficult to see from a distance

Pelage: coat of a mammal including: of hair, fur, wool or other soft covering, and different from bare skin

Pelagic: referring to species that spend the majority of their lives on or in the open ocean water column of the ocean, beyond the near-shore coastal zone, >3 miles offshore

Pelican: very large carnivorous, water birds, with long necks, bulky bodies, short legs, webbed feet, and at the base of the throat - a sac capable of holding 3 gallons of water. This adaptation works as a scoop, taking in fish and water, with the water escaping when the pelican lifts its head above the water surface

Performance measures: quantifiable indicator of how well an organization is achieving its objectives; in the case of SWAP, measures success of conservation actions through indicators such as acres of conserved land, number of restoration projects, or numbers of surveys focused on species of concern 

Pesticide: chemicals that are used to kill pests, especially insects

Phenological mismatch: phenomenon of food and habitat being available at different times than those to which the species was formerly cued; may be related to climate change 

Phenology: study of how the biological world times natural events in accordance with the climate; natural events impacted by sunlight, temperature, and precipitation (collectively climate) include breeding, flowering, migration, hibernation, and metamorphosis

Philopatry: annual homing to the same nesting area and often the same nest site

Photosynthesis: process by which plants with chlorophyll use the sun’s energy (light) to manufacture food (carbohydrates) and release oxygen

Piebald deer: genetic mutation where varying amounts of white hair are visible on the fur of the deer. This ranges from almost pure white except small patches of regular brown hair to just patches of white hair with otherwise normal markings

Pineal Gland: gland in the brain that determines when bucks grow their antlers and when they shed or drop them, based on the photoperiod or amount of light in the day

Pinelands: high, dry habitat in the Everglades ecosystem, with pine trees being the dominant tree species

Plant eater: animal that exclusively eats plants; See herbivore

Plant community: assemblage of plant species living together and interacting with each other in a common environment; a group of plant populations of different species that live in the same ecosystem

Plant diversity: variety of plant species provides a variety of food or cover for wildlife. Variation may occur at one point in time or over a period of time such as during the course of a season. Seasonal diversity of food and cover is often critical to the survival of a species. 

Plants: primarily photosynthetic organisms, reproducing by means of spores or seeds, having complex cellular arrangements, anchoring soil, moderating the water cycle, providing a major source of the world's oxygen, and providing direct or indirect food for most species of terrestrial life along with a variety of habitats for animal species

Plastron: ventral surface of the shell of a turtle or tortoise

Poaching: illegal hunting, shooting, trapping, or taking (harvesting) of a plant or animal from public or private property.  

Pocosin: type of wetland with deep, acidic, sandy, peat soils. Groundwater saturates the soil, except during brief seasonal dry spells and prolonged droughts. Pocosin soils are deficient in many nutrients, especially phosphorus

Poison: ingested or absorbed through the skin

Poison ivy: plant growing as a vine, that produces compound leaves with leaflets grouped in three’s. The plant oils it produces are a skin irritant to those who are allergic

Pollination: process of transferring pollen from the anther to the stigma of plants, often completed by animals including insects, birds, and mammals. Is necessary for the plants to produce seeds

Pollinator: animal that transfers pollen between the male and female parts of plants, thereby assisting in plant fruiting and reproduction. Pollinators may include insects such as bees, wasps, butterflies, beetles, ants, moths, birds, bats, other mammals or even reptiles

Pollution: contamination of soil, air, or water by a chemical or chemicals which may be detrimental to plants or animals

Polygamy or polygyny: term used when a male animal breeds with many females

Pope and Young: standardized way of scoring and recording animals harvested by bow hunters for comparison purposesw

Population: all the members of one species in a specific time within a given area

Population dynamics: factors regulating population levels including natality, productivity and mortality

Post-zygotic: after egg is fertilized

Potential biological removal: maximum number of animals, not including natural mortalities, that may be removed from that stock, while allowing the stock to reach or maintain its optimum sustainable population

Poult: young turkey of either sex

Pre-orbital glands: gland in the forehead of deer used to leave scent on branches and twigs rubbed by the deer

Pre-rut: period prior to the actual mating season or rut when bucks begin to establish territories and dominance in preparation for the rut

Pre-zygotic: before egg is fertilized

Predator: animal that lives by preying on (capturing, killing, and consuming) other animals as their food source

Prediction: statement describing what will happen assuming one particular scenario plays out. prioritization criteria: factors used to make decisions about which projects or actions are of highest priority given present circumstances

Prescriptions: written instructions by a forester for the preparation and administration of a resource management practice

Preservation: process of saving or protecting a natural resource or natural area by severely limiting or eliminating human influence 

Prescribed burning: controlled application of fire to forested areas to reach management objectives including: brush control, wildfire hazard reduction, and wildlife habitat improvements 

Prescribed burning cycle (return interval): time between prescribed burns. This frequency, along with intensity, largely determines the response of the plant community to fire

Prey: animal hunted for food by a carnivorous animal 

Primary: first, earliest, largest grouping

Primary shelter species: cedar and hemlock trees provide the best functional shelter as they intercept larger amounts of snow than other conifers. These species also are a favored winter food source which makes them difficult to regenerate and recruit back into the stand canopy

Prion: malformed protein particle associated with various brain diseases, including TSEs

Producer: organism that produces or makes food used by or for other organisms. Plants are producers, whereas animals are consumers

Production: output of reproductive effort, as in the number of eggs or poults created

Projection: assemblage of multiple predictions showing a range of what could happen based on a range of future scenarios

Propagule: reproductive structure, the seed of the red mangrove - a green, long, pencil-shaped seed that floats 

Prop roots: arching, spider-like, roots of the red mangrove which buffer wind and wave action, and provide shelter for many marine organisms including clams, oysters, and barnacles 

Public Trust: natural and cultural resources that are owned, protected and maintained by the government for public use

Purchase of development rights: incentive based, voluntary program with the intent of permanently protecting productive, sensitive, or aesthetic landscapes, yet retaining private ownership and management. In this program, a landowner sells the development rights of a parcel of land to a public agency, land trust or unit of government. A conservation easement is recorded on the title of the property that limits development permanently 

 

 

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