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Evaluating call-count procedures for measuring local mourning dove populations

January 1, 1978

Seventy-nine mourning dove call-count runs were made on a 32-km route in Osage County, Missouri, May 1-August 31, 1971 and 1972. Circular study areas, each 61 ha, surrounding stop numbers 4 and 5, were delineated for intensive nest searches and population estimates. Tallies of cooing male doves along the entire call-count route were quite variable in repeated runs, fluctuating as much as 50 percent on consecutive days. There were no consistent relationships between numbers of cooing males tallied at stops 4 and 5 and the numbers of current nests or doves estimated to be present in the surrounding study areas. We doubt the suitability of call-count procedures to estimate precisely the densities of breeding pairs, nests or production of doves on small areas. Our findings do not dispute the usefulness of the national call-count survey as an index to relative densities of mourning doves during the breeding season over large portions of the United States, or as an index to annual population trends.

Publication Year 1978
Title Evaluating call-count procedures for measuring local mourning dove populations
Authors M.J. Armbruster, T.S. Baskett, W.R. Goforth, K.C. Sadler
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Transactions of the Missouri Academy of Science
Index ID 1001852
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center