Survival and habitat use of fledgling Golden-winged Warblers in the western Great Lakes region: Chapter 8

Studies in Avian Biology - 8
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Postfledging habitat use and fledgling survival remain unstudied for most songbirds, but this  period is critical for understanding breeding habitat associations and full-season productivity. We used radiotelemetry to study movements, cover-type selection, and survival of fledgling Golden-winged Warblers (Vermivora chrysoptera) during the dependent postfledging period in managed forest landscapes of the western Great Lakes region. We used logistic exposure models to determine the relative importance of various habitat characteristics for explaining fledgling survival. In addition, we used compositional analysis, corrected for age-specific fledgling movement capabilities, to test for resource selection, as use versus availability, among cover types. We estimated that 48% of fledglings were depredated before independence from adult care at 25 days after fledging. Fledgling survival was lowest immediately after fledging, and 86% of predation occurred in the first 8  days following fledging. Distance from the nest to forest-shrubland edge was the strongest predictor of young fledgling survival, as survival decreased with nest distance into shrubland cover types and increased with nest distance into forest cover types. Fledglings from nests in shrubland cover types moved toward the nearest forest-shrubland edge, whereas fledglings from nests in forest cover types did not move toward edge. Fledglings selected mature forest and sapling-dominated clear-cuts over all other cover types during the early postfledging period, and fledgling survival in mature forest and sapling-dominated clearcuts was greater than in shrub-dominated clearcuts or wetland shrublands. Fledglings that were 9–25 days postfledging experienced high survival (daily survival >0.99) that was independent of any habitat variables we measured, and birds selected mature forest and shrub-dominated clear-cuts over all other cover types during that period. We conclude that sapling-dominated clear-cuts or mature forest with dense understory and shrub layers, cover types traditionally not associated with breeding, are important for fledgling survival, and therefore full-seasonal productivity in Golden-winged Warblers

Additional publication details

Publication type Book chapter
Publication Subtype Book Chapter
Title Survival and habitat use of fledgling Golden-winged Warblers in the western Great Lakes region: Chapter 8
Series title Studies in Avian Biology
Chapter 8
ISBN 978-1-4822-4068-9
Volume 49
Year Published 2016
Language English
Publisher CRC Press
Publisher location Boca Raton, FL
Contributing office(s) Coop Res Unit Leetown
Description 14 p.
Larger Work Type Book
Larger Work Subtype Monograph
Larger Work Title Golden-winged Warbler ecology, conservation, and habitat management (Studies in Avian Biology, volume 49)
First page 127
Last page 140