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Nonbreeding Season Survival and Habitat Use of Northern Bobwhite
Nonbreeding Season Survival and Habitat Use of Northern Bobwhite

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Led By

Adam C. Behney in collaboration with Larkin A. Powell and Joseph M. Wolske (University of Nebraska-Lincoln)

Study Area

Logan County

Project Status


Research Objectives

  • Estimate survival rates during the nonbreeding season (Oct – Mar).  
  • Assess habitat selection and movement characteristics during the nonbreeding season. 
  • Document use of artificial woody cover placed in upland rangelands.

Project Description

Identifying the vital rates to which population growth rate is limited by, or sensitive to, can help guide management actions aimed to affect population size. For bobwhites, some studies have suggested that some populations can be sensitive to adult nonbreeding season survival, especially in northern parts of their range. We have recently completed a research project looking at bobwhite demography during the breeding season but we do not have any information on population characteristics during the nonbreeding season. Therefore, our goals with this project are to estimate survival and assess habitat selection of northern bobwhites during the nonbreeding season. We will also assess whether bobwhites would use artificial structures in areas that seem suitable except for a lack of cover. ​

This research will contribute to our knowledge of basic quail demographic parameters in Northeastern Colorado and facilitate a future assessment of population sensitivity to various life-stages and demographics.  If nonbreeding season survival is found to be low, the habitat selection component of this project could be used to guide future management targeted toward improving nonbreeding bobwhite habitat.  Furthermore, if quail are found to use artificial structure in the uplands, it would justify the planting of shrubs to facilitate quail range expansion into the uplands.  

Associated Publications

Final report