Loehle et al. recently estimated survival rates from radio-telemetered northern spotted owls (Strix occidentalis caurina (Merriam, 1898)) and suggested that survival rates estimated for this species from capture-recapture studies were negatively biased, which subsequently resulted in the negatively biased estimates of rates of population change (lambda) reported by Anthony et al. (Wildl. Monogr. No. 163, pp. 1-47 (2006)). We argue that their survival estimates were inappropriate for comparison with capture-recapture estimates because (i) the manner in which they censored radio-telemetered individuals had the potential to positively bias their survival estimates, (ii) their estimates of survival were not valid for evaluating bias, and (iii) the size and distribution of their radiotelemetry study areas were sufficiently different from capture-recapture study areas to preclude comparisons. In addition, their inferences of negative bias in rates of population change estimated by Anthony et al. were incorrect and reflected a misunderstanding about those estimators.
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