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Scholars Day 2005, Wednesday, April 13

Analysis of Factors Affecting Predation Rates on Artificial Grassland Bird Nests in Western New York

The author studied predation of artificial grassland bird nests in 2004 at Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge in western New York State. Species observed included Savannah Sparrrows (Passerculus sandwichensis), Bobolinks (Dolichonyx oryzivorus), Eastern Meadowlarks (Sturnella magna), and Northern Harriers (Circus cyaneus). The study examined factors such as distance from edge, mean vegetation height, vegetation density, and nest concealment as they related to rates of nest predation. A 2-sample t-test was used to analyze normally distributed data at a significance level of P < 0.05. Not normally distributed data was analyzed using a Mann-Whitney test at a significance level of P < 0.05. Depredation of nests significantly decreased with increased distance from forest edge, increased vegetation height, and increased vegetation density. There was no significant correlation between nest concealment and rates of predation. Management implications for grassland birds are discussed.

Presenter: Kristina Klees (Undergraduate Student)
Topic: Environmental Science
Location: 140 Lennon
Time: 1:30 pm (Session III)

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