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Welcome to the technical sessions schedule for the 2015 SEAFWA Annual Meeting.

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Back To Schedule
Monday, November 2 • 1:00pm - 1:20pm
Time-activity Budgets of Dabbling Ducks and Shorebirds in Managed Tidal Impoundments and Adjacent Tidal Marshes

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Gretchen E. Nareff, West Virginia University; Sara H. Schweitzer, North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission; Ernie P. Wiggers, William E. Mills -Nemours Wildlife Foundation

Managed tidal impoundments are man-made wetlands constructed from natural tidal marshes with embankments and water control structures that manage water levels using tidal cycles. In South Carolina, 28,000 ha of managed tidal impoundments potentially provide important habitat for migrating and resident wildlife. The importance of traditionally-managed tidal impoundments relative to natural tidal marsh to migratory birds is poorly understood. Examining how birds allocate their time on managed tidal impoundments and natural tidal marshes can provide insight into whether birds are using these resources similarly or for different biological needs. We examined diurnal activity of Blue-winged Teal, Green-winged Teal, Greater Yellowlegs, and Lesser Yellowlegs to determine how these focal species used managed tidal impoundments and tidal marshes along the coast of South Carolina. Overall, frequency of behaviors differed between bird groups (teal and yellowlegs; F5, 5 = 7.4, P = 0.023) and between wetland types (managed tidal impoundments and unmanaged tidal marshes; F5, 5 = 8.3, P = 0.018). Proportion of time birds foraged was greater on tidal marshes (F1, 151 = 34.1, P < 0.0001), while proportion of time spent loafing (F1, 151 = 23.2, P < 0.0001) was greater on managed tidal impoundments. The greater proportion of time spent loafing on managed tidal impoundments suggest these wetlands provide body-maintenance opportunities not available in tidal marshes. Our results reveal the importance of managed tidal impoundments to migratory shorebirds and dabbling ducks within the coastal landscape. These managed habitats provide abundant, available food resources and protected roosting sites.

Monday November 2, 2015 1:00pm - 1:20pm EST
Ballroom Salon B

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