Bruce Dugger, Megan Zarzycki
Latin name: Anas acuta
Animal populations are influenced by events and conditions throughout the annual cycle, all of which may interact to influence changes in the reproduction or behavior of that species in another season. My research is focused on exploring the role of these cross seasonal effects on the population dynamics of the northern pintail throughout its North American range. Using available climatic, habitat, and management data I will test for evidence of cross seasonal effects in the pintail population and if present, how indices of the size and success of the pintail population may be affected by climatic fluctuations and changes in anthropogenic influences in key breeding and non-breeding areas. The pintail population continues to remain below North American Waterfowl Plan objectives, and an improved understanding of how the population’s reproductive success may be impacted by changes to the quantity and quality of their habitat across their range could aid management and how the population may respond to climate change and human driven land-use changes in the future.