Decomposition of red oak acorns (Quercus spp.; Section Erythrobalanus) could decrease forage biomass and gross energy (GE) available to wintering ducks from acorns. We estimated changes in mass and GE for 3 species of red oak acorns in flooded and non-flooded bottomland hardwood forests in Mississippi during winter 2009–2010. Mass loss of acorns was ≤ 8.1% and reduction in GE ≤ 0.03 kcal/g after exposure for 90 days. These small changes in mass and GE of red oak acorns would have minimal effect on carrying capacity of bottomland hardwood forests for ducks.
Leach, Alan G.; Straub, Jacob N.; Kaminski, Richard M.; Ezell, Andrew W.; Hawkins, Tracy S.; Leininger, Theodor D. 2012. Effects of winter flooding on mass and gross energy of bottomland hardwood acorns. The Journal of Wildlife Management 76(7):1519 1522.