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Survival estimates, mortality patterns, and population growth of Fennoscandian mallards Anas platyrhynchos
Kristianstad University, School of Education and Environment, Avdelningen för Naturvetenskap. Kristianstad University, Forskningsmiljön Man and Biosphere Health (MABH).ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2345-3953
Kristianstad University, School of Education and Environment, Avdelningen för Naturvetenskap. Kristianstad University, Forskningsmiljön Man and Biosphere Health (MABH).
Kristianstad University, School of Education and Environment, Avdelningen för Naturvetenskap. Kristianstad University, Forskningsmiljön Man and Biosphere Health (MABH).ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2868-2210
Department of Theoretical Ecology, Lund University.
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2008 (English)In: Annales Zoologici Fennici, ISSN 0003-455X, Vol. 45, no 6, 483-495 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Long-term mallard capture-recapture data from Sweden and Finland were analyzed to describe temporal mortality patterns and reasons. We used program MARK and Seber models to estimate annual survival (S) and recovery (r) rates. Survival rates were used in a Monte Carlo simulation to evaluate the correspondence between observed and predicted annual population sizes of a Finnish sub-population. About 90% of recovered birds died from hunting. Most recoveries were from the hunting season, and more males than females were shot. Predation was the most common cause of natural mortality. Finnish capture-recapture data fitted best the global model in which survival and recovery vary with age and sex. Annual survival and recovery rates for adult and juvenile males and females were overlapping, ranging from 0.46 to 0.90 (survival) and 0.07 to 0.17 (recovery), whereas pulli had lower survival rates (0.21-0.42). Pulli that were successfully sexed at the time of ringing had higher recovery rates (female pulli: 0.23; male pulli: 0.32) than juveniles and adults. Density-dependent fledgling production was detected in the Finnish sub-population and was accounted for in the Monte Carlo simulation, which estimated predicted breeding population size quite well, although one of the observed annual values (2003) fell outside the 95% confidence limits.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2008. Vol. 45, no 6, 483-495 p.
National Category
Biological Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hkr:diva-642ISI: 000262882600003OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hkr-642DiVA: diva2:208573
Available from: 2009-03-18 Created: 2009-03-18 Last updated: 2016-04-01Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Survival patterns and density-dependent processes in breeding mallards Anas platyrhynchos
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Survival patterns and density-dependent processes in breeding mallards Anas platyrhynchos
2007 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Measuring and assessing vital rates such as births and deaths are prerequisites for understanding population dynamics. Vital rates may be affected by the density of individuals, even though the importance of density dependence on population dynamics has been debated for a long time. The mallard Anas platyrhynchos is one of the foremost game species in the Holarctic, with millions of birds in hunters’ bags annually. Still, basic knowledge about regulation of mallards’ vital rates is poor, and experimental studies on this topic are rare.

In this thesis I have studied survival patterns and density dependence in mallards breeding in Sweden and Finland. Long-term ringing data from both countries were analysed for mortality patterns and causation, as well as for e.g. survival rate estimation. Most of the studies were, though, experiments run over two years involving manipulations of the density of nests, broods and/or adults, in southern and northern Sweden, comprising different biotic regions. Common response variables were survival of nests, ducklings and hens, mainly analysed with program MARK.

About 90% of the recovered mallards in Finland and Sweden were hunting kills. However, survival rates were high, ranging from 0.66 to 0.81 for most groups (sex*age). The generality of density dependence was evident since such processes were detected in all studies. Consequently, depredation rate was higher in high nest density compared to low nest density. Survival of ducklings was density-dependent in both boreal and nemoral biotic regions, with food limitation being evident in the former region but not in the latter. In spite of their generality, density-dependent patterns varied within as well between years, and for nest predation rates also between landscape types.

The findings about density dependence in breeding mallards in this thesis are novel since they are based on experiments. They are potentially of general interest for management because they embrace a variety of lakes in two geographically distant areas, each being representative for large temperate areas in the northern hemisphere. Detection of density dependence at the local scale may be important at larger scales, too, following the principle of ‘ideal preemptive distribution’ in a source-sink dynamic system.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Department of Wildlife, Fish, and Environmental Studies, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, 2007. 39 p.
Series
Acta Universitatis agriculturae Sueciae, ISSN 1652-6880 ; 2007:12
Keyword
broods, dabbling ducks, density dependence, ducklings, experiments, models, mortality, nest predation, regulation, survival
National Category
Ecology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hkr:diva-6782 (URN)978-91-576-7311-4 (ISBN)
Public defence
2007-03-23, Sveriges Lantbruksuniversitet, Alnarp, 09:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2010-08-24 Created: 2010-06-28 Last updated: 2014-06-05Bibliographically approved

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