Homing to nest baskets by wild female mallards

Journal of Wildlife Management
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A high rate of homing to nest baskets by adult female mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) was observed in prairie potholes of North Dakota. One hundred and thirteen female mallards were caught on nest baskets, banded, and marked with nasal saddles. Forty-six percent homed at least once to nest baskets in the marshes where they were previously captured. Two-thirds of the returnees were observed in the same baskets where they had been caught. The observed rate of homing by previously successful nesters (52 percent) was significantly (P < 0.01) higher than by unsuccessful nesters (16 percent). Nesting success was 83 percent in the year of marking and 90 percent in subsequent years. Seven (5 percent) of an estimated 140 marked female 1-day-old ducklings that hatched in nest baskets were recaptured as nesting adults in baskets. Five of these hens returned to their natal marshes, and two others were found within 2 km of their natal marshes. Band recovery data indicated that 91 percent of the hunting mortality occurred within 10 km of the banding locations. Information on estimated rate of annual survival and the observed rate of homing suggests that nearly all surviving marked adults returned to within 10 km of the marshes where they were banded.

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Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Homing to nest baskets by wild female mallards
Series title Journal of Wildlife Management
Volume 38
Issue 4
Year Published 1974
Language English
Contributing office(s) Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Description 6 p.
Larger Work Type Article
Larger Work Subtype Journal Article
Larger Work Title Journal of Wildlife Management
First page 714
Last page 719