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Telemetry techniques were used to study habitat use and home range of 12 drake and 12 hen mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) in the forested region of north-central Minnesota during the 1968-72 breeding seasons. Circumneutral bogs and seasonal wetlands were the most frequently used communities; the lakeshore communities most used were sand-gravel, overhanging brush, and bog mat. Based on the availability of habitat, the highest preference shown was for the seasonal community and the least for the softwood swamp; however, all communities were used to some extent during the breeding season. Lakeshore was always among the habitats most frequently used by pairs. Twelve nest were found, nine in nonpermanent wetlands and three in upland forest sites. Mean home range was 210 ha for hens and 240 ha for drakes. The long axis of the home ranges of drakes and hens averaged 2.8 and 2.7 km, respectively. Hens had smaller home ranges during the laying period (mean = 70 ha) than during prenesting (mean = 135 ha).
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Habitat use and home range of mallards breeding in Minnesota