Annual survival and site fidelity of northern pintails banded on the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, Alaska

Journal of Wildlife Management
By: , and 



We banded northern pintails (Anas acuta; n = 13,645) at a single site on the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta (YKD), Alaska, USA, from 1990 to 2001. We used recaptures from our site in combination with hunter recoveries to model annual survival, recovery rates, and fidelity to our capture location. Most recoveries (>90%) occurred in the Pacific Flyway with 64% reported from California's Central Valley. Our top candidate models allowed survival to vary by sex but not by age or year. Estimated annual survival was 77.6% (95% CI: 73.9-81.0%) for males and 60.2% (95% CI: 53.2-67.0%) for females. Reporting rates varied by age, sex, and year; estimates for adult males exceeded those for adult females by 3.5 times. Within sexes, reporting rates of hatch-year pintails exceeded those of adults. Estimated recovery rates were considerably lower than those estimated during the 1950s-1970s for winter banded pintails (Hestbeck 1993b), but there were no differences in survival rates. This suggests that changes in harvest regulations may not have influenced annual survival in this population. The propensity of banded pintails to return to our capture site (fidelity rate) varied between sexes and was positively correlated with water conditions in prairie Canada. Our estimates of fidelity rates varied from 77.4% to 87.2% for males and 89.8% to 94.3% for females. Our fidelity estimates suggest that some level of subpopulation structuring may exist for northern pintails. Additionally, our estimates of fidelity support previous observations of northern pintails overflying poor wetland habitat conditions on the Canadian prairies.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Annual survival and site fidelity of northern pintails banded on the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, Alaska
Series title Journal of Wildlife Management
DOI 10.2193/0022-541X(2005)069[1202:ASASFO]2.0.CO;2
Volume 69
Issue 3
Year Published 2005
Language English
Publisher Washington Wildlife Society
Contributing office(s) Alaska Science Center
Description 9 p.
Larger Work Type Article
Larger Work Subtype Journal Article
Larger Work Title Journal of Wildlife Management
First page 1202
Last page 1210
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N
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