Golden-winged Warbler nest-site habitat selection: Chapter 7

Studies in Avian Biology - 7
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Abstract

Avian habitat selection occurs at multiple spatial scales to incorporate life history requirements. Breeding habitat of Golden-winged Warblers (Vermivora chrysoptera) is characterized by largely forested landscapes containing natural or anthropogenic disturbance elements that maintain forest patches in early stages of succession. Breeding habitat occurs in a variety of settings, including shrub and forest swamps, regenerating forests following timber harvest, grazed pastures, and reclaimed mined lands. We identified structural components of nest sites for Golden-winged Warblers by measuring habitat characteristics across five states (North Carolina, New York, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, and West Virginia) in the Appalachian breeding-distribution segment and two states (Minnesota and Wisconsin) in the Great Lakes breeding-distribution segment. We measured habitat characteristics at the nest-site scale with a series of nested plots characterizing herbaceous vegetation (grasses and forbs), woody shrubs and saplings, and overstory trees. We measured similar variables at paired random plots located 25–50 m from the nest within the same territory to evaluate selection. We used conditional logistical regression to identify which parameters were important in habitat selection and Simple Saddlepoint Approximation (SSA) to aid in management interpretation of identified parameters for each study site. Study site was an important determinant for which parameters were significant in nest-site selection, although selection for some parameters was consistent across sites. The amount of woody cover at the nest-site scale was consistently present in the top nest-site selection models across sites, although the direction of the relationship was not the same across all sites. We also identified grass, forb, woody cover, and vegetation density as important components of Golden-winged Warbler nest-site selection. Based on SSA, we identified vegetation thresholds to aid in designing habitat management prescriptions to promote creation or restoration of Golden-winged Warbler nesting habitat across the eastern portion of their breeding distribution.

Additional publication details

Publication type Book chapter
Publication Subtype Book Chapter
Title Golden-winged Warbler nest-site habitat selection: Chapter 7
Series title Studies in Avian Biology
Chapter 7
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 17 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 109
Last page 125