Muskrat abundance responses to water level regulation within freshwater coastal wetlands

  • Published source details Toner J., Farrell J.M. & Mead J.V. (2010) Muskrat abundance responses to water level regulation within freshwater coastal wetlands. Wetlands, 30, 211-219.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Manage wetland water levels for mammal species

Action Link
Terrestrial Mammal Conservation
  1. Manage wetland water levels for mammal species

    A replicated, site comparison study in 2000–2006 at three wetland sites on the St Lawrence River, USA (Toner et al. 2010) found that managing wetland water levels to be higher in winter increased the abundance of muskrat Ondatra zibethicus houses. This result was not analysed for statistical significance. At wetlands where water levels were managed to be higher in winter, muskrat house density was higher (3.0 houses/ha) than in wetlands where water levels were not managed (0.7 houses/ha). At two wetland sites, in 2000–2004 and 2004–2006, water control structures were installed to increase water levels during winter. At a third site, no such structure was installed. Where water levels were not managed, they were lower during winter. Muskrat houses were counted at all sites in winters of 2001–2006, using unspecified methodologies.

    (Summarised by: Phil Martin)

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