Capture-recapture studies are crucial in many circumstances for estimating demographic parameters for wildlife and fish populations. Pollock's robust design, involving multiple sampling occasions per period of interest, provides several advantages over classical approaches. This includes the ability to estimate the probability of being present and available for detection, which in some situations is equivalent to breeding probability. We present a model for estimating availability for detection that relaxes two assumptions required in previous approaches. The first is that the sampled population is closed to additions and deletions across samples within a period of interest. The second is that each member of the population has the same probability of being available for detection in a given period. We apply our model to estimate survival and breeding probability in a study of hawksbill sea turtles (Eretmochelys imbricata), where previous approaches are not appropriate.
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Using open robust design models to estimate temporary emigration from capture-recapture data