SEAFWA 2018 has ended
The following schedule is from the 72nd Annual Conference of the Southeastern Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies which was held October 21-24, 2018 in Mobile, Alabama. 
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Monday, October 22 • 4:00pm - 4:20pm
SYMPOSIUM-02: Survival and Distribution of Black-Bellied Whistling Ducks (Dendrocygna autumnalis) in the Southeastern United States

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AUTHORS: Gregory D. Balkcom, Wildlife Resources Division, Georgia Department of Natural Resources; Bradley S. Cohen, College of Arts and Sciences, Tennessee Technological University; Samantha E. Askin, Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources, University of Georgia; Joseph Benedict, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission; James A. Rader, Ducks Unlimited, North Charleston, SC; J. Dale James, Ducks Unlimited, Ridgeland, MS; Bret A. Collier, School of Renewable Natural Resources, Louisiana State University Agricultural Center; Michael J. Chamberlain, Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources, University of Georgia

ABSTRACT: Black-bellied whistling ducks (Dendrocygna autumnalis) are a neo-tropical migrant species distributed in coastal areas of northern South America, Central America, and southern North America. Despite their commonality, the population distribution, survival, and harvest-mortality of whistling ducks in the southeastern United States remains unclear. We used whistling duck sightings reported to eBird to delineate range expansion from 2006–2016 in Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina. Concurrently, we used band resighting and recovery data from 759 whistling ducks captured in 5 states (Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, Texas, and Louisiana) from 2014-2017 to construct a Barker model in program MARK, and calculate survival and annual recovery rate. We noted expanding whistling duck distribution in the southern Atlantic flyway, and populations during our study period had a relatively high annual survival rate and low recovery rate. Whistling duck distribution seems ubiquitous in coastal areas of the southern Atlantic flyway, and annual survival is high whereas harvest rates are low. Hence, we suggest state agencies consider facilitating increased harvest opportunities of black-bellied whistling ducks while simultaneously monitoring harvest and survival rates. Future research should continue to refine population vital rate estimates for whistling ducks, with an emphasis on understanding population abundance and harvest rates.

Monday October 22, 2018 4:00pm - 4:20pm CDT
Grand Bay II

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