Science, population ecology, and the management of the American black duck

Journal of Wildlife Management



This essay deals with the relevance of some of the ideas of Romesburg (1981) to population ecology and management of the American black duck (Anas rubripes). Most investigations dealing with the effects of hunting regulations on black duck populations have used the hypothetico-deductive (H-D) approach of specifying a priori hypotheses and associated deduced predictions. These investigations have not used manipulative experimentation, however, but have involved severely constrained analyses of historical data and have thus produced weak inferences. The 1982 lawsuit over black duck hunting regulations, the current uncertainty about appropriate black duck management actions, and the frequent skirmishes in the published literature of black duck population ecology are natural consequences of these weak inferences. I suggest that we attempt to take advantage of management and other manipulations by treating them as an opportunity to learn something via experimentation, as recommended by Macnab (1983) and Walters (1986).

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Science, population ecology, and the management of the American black duck
Series title Journal of Wildlife Management
Volume 55
Issue 4
Year Published 1991
Language English
Contributing office(s) Patuxent Wildlife Research Center
Description 790-799
Larger Work Type Article
Larger Work Subtype Journal Article
Larger Work Title Journal of Wildlife Management
First page 790
Last page 799