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Predation on waterfowl in arctic tundra and prairie breeding areas: A review

January 1, 2001

Predation is a natural component of waterfowl population biology, but environmental alterations have changed the magnitude and importance of predation on waterfowl breeding areas. We reviewed the status of waterfowl populations, adaptations of waterfowl that minimize impacts of predation, and the impacts of predation on waterfowl populations in 2 major North American breeding areas, the Arctic and Prairie Regions. We identified the underlying factors contributing to most waterfowl predation problems to be changes in essential breeding habitats and changes in predator community composition and abundance. In the Arctic, high predation rates on waterfowl eggs and young are usually associated with predators gaining access to populations that were previously isolated. In the prairie, predation problems are often related to large-scale habitat degradation coupled with changes in predator communities. Predation problems are often symptomatic of inadequate habitat management, but we recognize that habitat management alone is not always sufficient to effectively manage predation problems. Predation management efforts should be integrated with strategies of long-term management of habitats critical to breeding waterfowl, strategies embraced by the North American Waterfowl Management Plan. Predation management must be tailored to different situations and include an element of flexibility that allows appropriate response to the dynamic nature of factors influencing survival and recruitment.

Publication Year 2001
Title Predation on waterfowl in arctic tundra and prairie breeding areas: A review
Authors Marsha A. Sovada, R. Michael Anthony, Bruce D.J. Batt
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Wildlife Society Bulletin
Index ID 70185400
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Alaska Science Center