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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Effects of electric-fence exclosures on nest predation and nesting success of snowy plovers Charadrius alexandrinus at Salt Plains National Wildlife Refuge, Oklahoma, USA

Published source details

Winton B.R., Leslie D.M. Jr. & Rupert J.R. (2000) Breeding ecology and management of snowy plovers in north-central Oklahoma. Journal of Field Ornithology, 71, 573-584

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Protect bird nests using electric fencing Bird Conservation

A replicated, controlled trial on the same study site as Koenen et al. (1996) in 1995-6 (Winton et al. 2000) found that the hatching success of snowy plover Charadrius alexandrinus nests was not significantly different (for either year of monitoring) between nests inside three electric fence exclosures (4.5, 24 and 20 ha) and outside exclosures (1995: 44% of nests inside vs. 34% nests outside; 1996: 61% vs. 57%). However, apparent nesting success did differ in 1996 (71% of 17 monitored nests were successful vs. 49% of 160 nests) but not in 1995 (37% of 70 nests inside vs. 38% of 168). The proportion of eggs lost to mammalian predators (mainly coyotes Canis latrans) was lower inside the exclosures (1% vs. 6%), but more eggs were predated by birds, mainly ring-billed gulls Larus delawarensis (11% vs. 3%).