Skip to Main Content
U.S. Forest Service
Caring for the land and serving people

United States Department of Agriculture

Home > Search > Publication Information

  1. Share via EmailShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on Twitter
    Dislike this pubLike this pub

    Description

    It is critically important to determine and understand relationships between endangered species populations and landscape and habitat features to effectively manage and conserve populations and the habitats they rely on. Several recent studies focused on the golden-cheeked warbler (Setophaga chrysoparia), an endangered songbird that breeds exclusively in central Texas, USA, have used a reproductive index to link pairing and breeding success to various factors of interest. However, no field test has evaluated the performance of a reproductive index at estimating productivity of golden-cheeked warblers or similar forest songbirds. We computed reproductive index ranks for 5 observers from multiple plots during 2013 and 2014 and compared these ranks with actual reproductive success determined from territory mapping and nest monitoring of color-banded adults. At the territory level, we found no significant correlation between 84 matched territories delineated by the reproductive index and territories delineated by intensive monitoring. At the plot level, index monitoring underestimated the total number of territorial males, but density from index monitoring was weakly correlated with actual density. We found no significant relationship for pairing success estimated from the reproductive index and actual pairing success, or with breeding success from the reproductive index with nest survival or actual breeding success, when controlling for observer. The reproductive index did not produce reliable estimates of reproductive performance at either the territory or plot level and we recommend intensive monitoring of color-banded individuals when absolute estimates of reproductive success rates or other demographic measures are required, such as in species viability or threat assessments.

    Publication Notes

    • Check the Northern Research Station web site to request a printed copy of this publication.
    • Our on-line publications are scanned and captured using Adobe Acrobat.
    • During the capture process some typographical errors may occur.
    • Please contact Sharon Hobrla, shobrla@fs.fed.us if you notice any errors which make this publication unusable.
    • We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.

    Citation

    Reidy, Jennifer L.; O'Donnell, Lisa; Thompson, Frank R., III. 2015. Evaluation of a reproductive index for estimating songbird productivity: Case study of the golden-cheeked warbler. Wildlife Society Bulletin. 39(4): 721-731.

    Cited

    Google Scholar

    Keywords

    breeding success, color-banded birds, forest songbird, intensive monitoring, pairing success, territory mapping, Vickery index

    Related Search


    XML: View XML
Show More
Show Fewer
Jump to Top of Page
https://www.fs.usda.gov/treesearch/pubs/52008