Presentation Title

Arthropod Effect on Post-fledging Survival of the Dickcissel (Spiza americana)

Advisor Information

L. LaReesa Wolfenbarger

Location

UNO Criss Library, Room 231

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation

Start Date

4-3-2016 1:15 PM

End Date

4-3-2016 1:30 PM

Abstract

The post-fledging period, the time period after leaving the nest to parental independence, is an important yet understudied portion of grassland bird lifecycles which may help determine how bird populations respond to habitat management. Arthropods, specifically grasshoppers and caterpillars, are the primary food source of young Dickcissels (Spiza americana) and may influence post-fledging survival. However, we lack published studies on how grassland management impacts arthropods or post-fledging survival. I present my research on the effects arthropod abundance (number of arthropods per unit area) and biomass (weight of arthropods per unit area) have on post-fledging survival of Dickcissels. From June-August 2015, I monitored radio-tagged fledglings daily and collected arthropods from male territories and surrounding prairies. I hypothesize a higher arthropod abundance and biomass will result in increased post-fledging survival. I estimate survival using non-parametric Kaplan-Meier procedures using R statistical software. I then compare candidate models using Akaike’s Information Criterion to elucidate the effect arthropods have on post-fledging survival. Preliminary analysis reveals a higher than anticipated survival rate during the post-fledging period. Predictions made from the top model show higher arthropod biomass slightly increases post-fledging survival.

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Mar 4th, 1:15 PM Mar 4th, 1:30 PM

Arthropod Effect on Post-fledging Survival of the Dickcissel (Spiza americana)

UNO Criss Library, Room 231

The post-fledging period, the time period after leaving the nest to parental independence, is an important yet understudied portion of grassland bird lifecycles which may help determine how bird populations respond to habitat management. Arthropods, specifically grasshoppers and caterpillars, are the primary food source of young Dickcissels (Spiza americana) and may influence post-fledging survival. However, we lack published studies on how grassland management impacts arthropods or post-fledging survival. I present my research on the effects arthropod abundance (number of arthropods per unit area) and biomass (weight of arthropods per unit area) have on post-fledging survival of Dickcissels. From June-August 2015, I monitored radio-tagged fledglings daily and collected arthropods from male territories and surrounding prairies. I hypothesize a higher arthropod abundance and biomass will result in increased post-fledging survival. I estimate survival using non-parametric Kaplan-Meier procedures using R statistical software. I then compare candidate models using Akaike’s Information Criterion to elucidate the effect arthropods have on post-fledging survival. Preliminary analysis reveals a higher than anticipated survival rate during the post-fledging period. Predictions made from the top model show higher arthropod biomass slightly increases post-fledging survival.