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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Response of common goldeneye Bucephala clangula to dark vs. light interiors of nest boxes on Elk Lake, Ontario, Canada

Published source details

Lumsden H., Page R. & Gauthier M. (1980) Choice of nest boxes by common goldeneyes in Ontario. Wilson Bulletin, 92, 497-505


This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.

Provide artificial nesting sites for wildfowl Bird Conservation

A series of replicated studies at river and lake sites in northern Ontario, Canada in 1974-9 (Lumsden et al. 1980), found that cavity-nesting ducks (mainly common goldeneyes Bucephala clangula) preferentially used nest boxes with large (13 x 10 cm) entrance holes high (33 cm) above the floor of nest boxes with dark interiors. Nest boxes with large entrance holes were used more than those with medium (10.5 × 8 cm) holes; boxes with small (7.5 × 6 cm) holes were not used by goldeneyes or hooded mergansers Mergus cucullatus (318 sets of boxes tested). Boxes with entrance holes 18 or 25.5 cm above the base of the box were not used by goldeneyes (201 sets) and boxes with dark-stained interiors were used more than those with unstained interiors (39 breeding attempts vs. 13 attempts, 73-5 sets for each of six years). Differences between tree species were minimal and orientation had no impact.