Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Davis, J. Brian

Committee Member

Kaminski, Richard M.

Committee Member

Gray, Matthew J.

Date of Degree


Document Type

Graduate Thesis - Open Access


Wildlife and Fisheries Science

Degree Name

Master of Science


College of Forest Resources


Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Aquaculture


American black duck (Anas rubripes) populations declined throughout North America from 1950–1990, but the breeding population since has stabilized. However, limited information exists on black ducks in the Mississippi Flyway, where wintering populations continue to decline. I radiomarked 111 female black ducks at Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge (TNWR) in winters 2010–2012 to estimate winter survival and investigate patterns of habitat selection. Winter survival (83–85%) was greater than or comparable to previous estimates for black duck populations in North America. Interval survival increased 0.6% with a 100 g increase in body mass, but survival differed between years and waterfowl hunting seasons relative to body mass. Black ducks selected habitats on TNWR and emergent/scrub-shrub wetlands throughout winter regardless of hunting season or time of day. High winter survival rates and consistent use of TNWR suggest the refuge provides an important complex of habitats for black ducks wintering in Tennessee.



Rmark||odds ratios||winter survival rates||dabbling duck||GLMM