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Several recently published papers discussed the importance of systematics (the study of evolutionary and genetic relationships among organisms) and taxonomy (the naming and classification of organisms) for managing wildlife (Ryder 1986, Avise 1989, Amato 1991, O'Brien and Mayr 1991, Dowling et al. 1992), Often, classification below the species level is needed; for example, the Endangered Species Act of 1973 applies to local populations and subspecies as well as species. Conservation efforts may focus below the species level because of concerns about the fitness, evolutionary potentials, and locally adapted gene pools of natural populations (Soulé 1986, Hedrick and Milller 1992). This can be considered the genetic...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Wildlife Society Bulletin
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In 2003, a reintroduction program was initiated at Badlands National Park (BNP), South Dakota, USA, with swift foxes (Vulpes velox) translocated from Colorado and Wyoming, USA, as part of a restoration effort to recover declining swift fox populations throughout its historical range. Estimates of age-specific survival are necessary to evaluate the potential for population growth of reintroduced populations. We used 7 years (2003–2009) of capture–recapture data of 243 pups, 29 yearlings, and 69 adult swift foxes at BNP and the surrounding area to construct Cormack–Jolly–Seber model estimates of apparent survival within a capture–mark–recapture framework using Program MARK. The best model for estimating recapture...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Wildlife Society Bulletin
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The Gulf Coast Joint Venture of the North American Waterfowl Management Plan began contracting private agricultural lands (hereafter mini-refuges) in 1988 to expand existing sanctuaries for northern pintails (Anas acuta) in southwestern Louisiana. Previous research suggested that mini-refuges may prove more attractive to pintails than permanent, open-water pools (pools) on refuges because mini-refuges provide sanctuary and food during the day, whereas pools generally provide only sanctuary (Rave and Cordes 1993). We used radiotelemetry to compare diel use of mini-refuges and pools (Lacassine Pool and Amoco Pool) by female pintails in southwestern Louisiana during winters of 1991-1992 and 1992-1993. We examined variation...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Wildlife Society Bulletin
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Concern about recent amphibian declines has led to research on amphibian populations, but few statistically tested, standardized methods of counting amphibians exist. We tested whether counts of northern two-lined salamander larvae (Eurycea bislineata) sheltered in leaf litter bags--a relatively new, easily replicable survey technique--had a linear correlation to total number of larvae. Using experimental enclosures placed in streams, we compared number of salamanders found in artificial habitat (leaf litter bags) with total number of salamanders in each enclosure. Low numbers of the animals were found in leaf litter bags, and the relative amount of variation in the index (number of animals in leaf litter bags compared...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Wildlife Society Bulletin
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Methods to sample the abundance of moist-soil seeds efficiently and accurately are critical for evaluating management practices and determining food availability. We adapted a portable, gasoline-powered vacuum to estimate abundance of seeds on the surface of a moist-soil wetland in east-central Mississippi and evaluated the sampler by simulating conditions that researchers and managers may experience when sampling moist-soil areas for seeds. We measured the percent recovery of known masses of seeds by the vacuum sampler in relation to 4 experimentally controlled factors (i.e., seed-size class, sample mass, soil moisture class, and vacuum time) with 2-4 levels per factor. We also measured processing time of samples...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Wildlife Society Bulletin
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An abundance of waste corn, a key food of many wildlife species, has helped make possible the widespread success of wildlife management in the United States over the past half century. We found waste corn post harvest in Nebraska declined by 47% from 1978 to 1998 due primarily to improvements in combine headers resulting in a marked decline in ear loss. The reduction in waste coincided with major declines in fat storage by sandhill cranes and white-fronted geese during spring migration. Sandhill cranes, northern pintails, white-fronted geese, and lesser snow geese avoided soybeans while staging in spring in the Rainwater Basin Area and Central Platte River Valley. These findings and other literature suggest soybeans...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Wildlife Society Bulletin
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Migratory mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) and pronghorn (Antilocapra americana) populations rely on seasonal ranges to meet their annual nutritional and energetic requirements. Because seasonal ranges often occur great distances apart and across a mix of vegetation types and land ownership, maintaining migration corridors to and from these ranges can be difficult, especially if managers do not have detailed information on mule deer and pronghorn seasonal movements. We captured, radiomarked, and monitored mule deer (n = 171) and pronghorn (n = 34) in western Wyoming to document seasonal distribution patterns and migration routes. Mule deer and pronghorn migrated 20-158 km and 116-258 km, respectively, between seasonal...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Wildlife Society Bulletin
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This paper describes a cooperative learning environment and a course continuum in wildlife ecology and management which promote the professional development of undergraduates. Students learn about functional relationships in ecology and management in lecture periods that focus on concepts, with participation by students in active learning exercises. Laboratory periods are designed around learning groups, which consist of freshmen through graduate students who focus on a common theme as they work together, while each student is responsible for his or her own research. Undergraduate teaching assistants and senior wildlife management students coordinate the activities of the learning groups and supervise the student...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Wildlife Society Bulletin
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Beginning in 1977the FWS provided southern Atlantic Flyway states the opportunity to liberalize wood duck harvest regulations. Harvest subsequently increased throughout the flyway but appeared to be more a function of population growth than changes in regulations. In the South, harvest rate increased only slightly for young males and no decline in average survival was detected. We found no evidence of increased harvest pressure on nontarget northern populations. We concluded that liberalized regulations provided increased hunting opportunities in southern states without adversely impacting northern populations.
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Wildlife Society Bulletin
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Relative nestling condition, typically measured as nestling mass or as an index including nestling mass, is commonly purported to correlate with fledgling songbird survival. However, most studies directly investigating fledgling survival have found no such relationship. We weighed feces and stomach contents of nestling golden-winged warblers (Vermivora chrysoptera) to investigate the potential contribution of variation in digestive contents to differences in nestling mass. We estimated that the mass of a seventh-day (near fledging) nestling golden-winged warbler varies by 0.65 g (approx. 9% of mean nestling mass) depending on the contents of the nestling's digestive system at the time of weighing, and that digestive...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Wildlife Society Bulletin
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Conservation of animal migratory movements is among the most important issues in wildlife management. To address this need for landscape-scale monitoring of raptor populations, we developed a novel, baited photographic observation network termed the “Appalachian Eagle Monitoring Program” (AEMP). During winter months of 2008–2012, we partnered with professional and citizen scientists in 11 states in the United States to collect approximately 2.5 million images. To our knowledge, this represents the largest such camera-trap effort to date. Analyses of data collected in 2011 and 2012 revealed complex, often species-specific, spatial and temporal patterns in winter raptor movement behavior as well as spatial and temporal...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Wildlife Society Bulletin
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Lead poisoning is a threat to birds, particularly scavenging birds of prey. With the availability of portable lead-testing kits, an increasing number of field researchers are testing wild-caught birds, in situ, for lead poisoning. We describe guidelines for evaluation of lead toxicity in wild raptors by outlining field testing of blood-lead concentrations, presenting criteria for removing a lead-poisoned bird from the wild for treatment, and suggesting strategies for effective treatment of lead intoxicated raptors. Field testing of birds is most commonly accomplished via portable electrochemical analysis of blood; visual observation of condition alone may provide insufficient evidence upon which to make a decision...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Wildlife Society Bulletin
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Assessing nutrient stores in avian species is important for understanding the extent to which body condition influences success or failure in life‚Äźhistory events. We evaluated predictive models using morphometric characteristics to estimate total body lipids (TBL) and total body protein (TBP), based on traditional proximate analyses, in spring migrating lesser snow geese (Anser caerulescens caerulescens) and Ross's geese (A. rossii). We also compared performance of our lipid model with a previously derived predictive equation for TBL developed for nesting lesser snow geese. We used external and internal measurements on 612 lesser snow and 125 Ross's geese collected during spring migration in 2015 and 2016 within...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Wildlife Society Bulletin
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We examined whether radiotransmitters adversely affected the reproductive performance of Cassin's auklets (Ptychoramphus aleuticus) breeding on the California Channel Islands during 1999-2001. We attached external radiotransmitters to 1 partner in 108 Cassin's auklet pairs after nest initiation and used 131 unmarked, but handled, pairs as controls. Compared to alpha chicks raised by radiomarked pairs, alpha chicks raised by unmarked pairs had faster mass growth rates (1.95 ± 0.30 g d−1 vs. 3.37 ± 0.53 g d−1, respectively), faster wing growth rates (2.46 ± 0.10 mm d−1 vs. 2.85 ± 0.05 mm d−1), greater peak fledging masses (118.9 ± 3.5 g vs. 148.3 ± 2.4 g), and higher fledging success (61% vs. 90%). Fledging success...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Wildlife Society Bulletin
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Some animals exhibit call-and-response behaviors that can be exploited to facilitate detection. Traditionally, acoustic surveys that use call-and-respond techniques have required an observer's presence to perform the broadcast, record the response, or both events. This can be labor-intensive and may influence animal behavior and, thus, survey results. We developed an automated acoustic survey device using commercially available hardware (e.g., laptop computer, speaker, microphone) and an author-created (JS) software program ("HOOT") that can be used to survey for any animal that calls. We tested this device to determine 1) deployment longevity, 2) effective sampling area, and 3) ability to detect known packs of...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Wildlife Society Bulletin
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Cougar (Puma concolor) management has been hindered by inability to identify population trends. We documented changes in sex and age of harvested cougars during an experimentally induced reduction in population size and subsequent recovery to better understand the relationship between sex-age composition and population trend in exploited populations. The cougar population in the Snowy Range, southeast Wyoming, was reduced by increased harvest (treatment phase) from 58 independent cougars (>1 year old) (90% CI = 36-81) in the autumn of 1998 to 20 by the spring of 2000 (mean exploitation rate = 43%) and then increased to 46 by spring 2003 following 3 years of reduced harvests (mean exploitation rate = 18%). Pretreatment...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Wildlife Society Bulletin