To increase recruitment of mallards (Anas platyrhynchos), wildlife managers must understand the habitat and space needs of mallard broods. During 1989-90, we examined the movements, home range, and habitat use of 27 radio-marked mallard broods on Lower Klamath National Wildlife Refuge, California. Twelve of the 27 broods made 22 relocation movements (>1,000 m in 24 hr) in the first week (n = 6) and after the fourth (n = 16) week of life. Mean home range size was 0.93 km2 (SE = 0.25) and did not differ between years (P = 0.26). Brood-rearing females selected seasonally flooded wetlands with a cover component and avoided open or permanently flooded habitats. In 1989, broods hatched in permanent wetlands were less successful in fledging (P = 0.006) radio-marked ducklings than broods from seasonal wetlands, suggesting habitat availability or movement to preferred habitats may affect duckling survival.
Additional Publication Details
Movements and habitat use of mallard broods in northeastern California