Highway right-of-way: mowing versus succession as related to duck nesting

  • Published source details Voorhees L.D. & Cassel J.F. (1980) Highway right-of-way: mowing versus succession as related to duck nesting. Journal of Wildlife Management, 44, 155-163.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Mowing roadside verges

Action Link
Bird Conservation
  1. Mowing roadside verges

    A replicated, controlled trial in 1969-72 in North Dakota, USA (Voorhees & Cassel 1980), found that more ducks nested in unmown than mown road verges (although this difference was not significant in 1972). However, nesting success remained between 40-60% in mowed strips, whereas it fell from >70% to <30% in unmown strips due to an increase in mammalian nest predation. Alternate mowed and unmown 1.6 km strips of roadside vegetation were compared along 37km of Interstate 94. The 23 mowed strips (totalling 123 ha) were mown once in autumn. Six duck species nested over the four years: blue-winged teal Anas discors, mallard A. platyrhynchos, gadwall A. strepera, northern shoveler A. clypeata, pintail A. acuta and lesser scaup Aythya affinis.


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