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Estimating sighting proportions of American alligator nests during helicopter survey

January 1, 2000

Proportions of American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) nests sighted during aerial survey in Florida were estimated based upon multiple surveys by different observers. We compared sighting proportions across habitats, nesting seasons, and observer experience levels. The mean sighting proportion across all habitats and years was 0.736 (SE=0.024). Survey counts corrected by the mean sighting proportion reliably predicted total nest counts (7?2=0.933). Sighting proportions did not differ by habitat type (P=0.668) or year P=0.328). Experienced observers detected a greater proportion of nests (P<0.0001) than did either less experienced or inexperienced observers. Reliable estimates of nest abundance can be derived from aerial counts of alligator nests when corrected by the appropriate sighting proportion.

Citation Information

Publication Year 2000
Title Estimating sighting proportions of American alligator nests during helicopter survey
Authors Kenneth G. Rice, H. Franklin Percival, Allan R. Woodward
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Proceedings of the Annual Conference of the Southeastern Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies
Index ID 70162303
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Southeast Ecological Science Center