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dc.contributor.authorLyons, Timothy P.
dc.contributor.authorMiller, James R.
dc.contributor.authorDebinski, Diane M.
dc.contributor.authorEngle, David M.
dc.identifier.citationLyons, Timothy P., James R. Miller, Diane M. Debinski, David M. Engle. 2015. Identifying factors related to predator-specific patterns of nest loss in managed grasslands. Ecological Applications 25(6): 1596-1605. Available at:
dc.description.abstractPredation is the leading cause of nest failure for many passerines and considerable effort is devoted to identifying the habitat characteristics and management practices that influence nest loss. The habitat components associated with nest loss are strongly influenced by the ecology of nest predators and differ among predator species as a result. Nevertheless, there is a tendency to generalize about the effects of habitat features and management on nest failure without considering how resulting patterns are influenced by nest predators. We examined how predator-specific patterns of nest loss differed among predators and in response to grassland management with fire and grazing by cattle (Bos taurus). We used video cameras to monitor and identify predators at nests of the Grasshopper Sparrow (Ammodramus savannarum), a species of conservation concern throughout its range. We observed predation by 15 different species that differed in their response to management and the habitat characteristics associated with nests they preyed on. Losses to mammals and snakes were more likely at nests with greater amounts of litter cover and tall fescue (Schedonorus phoenix). Mammals were less likely to prey on nests surrounded by greater forb cover. Nest predation by snakes was lower in burned areas, whereas predation by mammals and Brown-headed Cowbirds (Molothrus ater) was unaffected by the use of fire. Neither vegetation density at the nest, nor landscape context was related to nest loss by any predator taxon. Although there were many similarities, we identified important differences in the species composing the nest predator community between our study and other published research. These differences are likely to be responsible for geographic variation in the influence of habitat features and management actions on nest success. Our results demonstrate the need for natural resource managers to incorporate knowledge of local nest predators and their ecology when developing management prescriptions aimed at enhancing the reproductive success of songbirds.en_US
dc.description.sponsorshipIowa State Wildlife Grants Program (grant U-2-R-1) in cooperation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program; the Oklahoma Agricultural Experiment Station; Iowa State University; and the University of Illinois.en_US
dc.rightsThis Item is protected by copyright and/or related rights. You are free to use this Item in any way that is permitted by the copyright and related rights legislation that applies to your use. For other uses you need to obtain permission from the rights-holder(s).en_US
dc.titlePredator identity influences the effect of habitat management on nest predationen_US
mus.citation.journaltitleEcological Applicationsen_US
mus.identifier.categoryLife Sciences & Earth Sciencesen_US
mus.relation.collegeCollege of Letters & Scienceen_US
mus.relation.universityMontana State University - Bozemanen_US
mus.contributor.orcidDebinski, Diane M.|0000-0002-7144-4640en_US

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