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Prenesting use of intertidal habitats by piping plovers on South Monomoy Island, Massachusetts

June 16, 2010

On barrier islands, piping plovers commonly select nest sites adjacent to bay-side intertidal flats, pools, or other moist substrates that are protected from ocean waves (Patterson et al. 1991, Elias et al. 2000, Keane 2002). During the fledging period, these areas often support more terrestrial arthropods than adjacent ocean beaches (Loegering and Fraser 1995, Elias et al. 2000). Plover chicks in these areas typically forage at higher rates, and they often have higher survival rates than chicks foraging exclusively on backshore and ocean intertidal areas (Loegering and Fraser 1995, Elias et al. 2000). In some places, however, piping plovers nest near protected moist substrates even though physical barriers prevent broods from reaching them (Patterson et al. 1991, Loegering and Fraser 1995, Keane 2002). This suggests that nesting near protected moist substrates is adaptive for adults even if their hatchlings cannot forage there until they fledge.

Citation Information

Publication Year 2005
Title Prenesting use of intertidal habitats by piping plovers on South Monomoy Island, Massachusetts
DOI 10.2193/0022-541X(2005)69[1731:PUOIHB]2.0.CO;2
Authors James D. Fraser, S. E. Keane, P. A. Buckley
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Journal of Wildlife Management
Series Number
Index ID 5224636
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Patuxent Wildlife Research Center