IAB Research Project Description

Relationship Between Physiological Condition and Reproduction of Lesser Scaup

This bird is difficult to distinguish from the greater scaup in the field. In good light, look for the purple gloss in the male's head feathers. This duck has one of the most extensive breeding ranges of North American waterfowl, but The Yukon Flats in Alaska is home to the greatest nesting density of Lesser Scaup. http://alaska.fws.gov/mbsp/mbm/waterfowl/species/images/Lesser-scaup.jpg Credit: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Any and all uses of these images must include photographer credit.

Continental surveys indicate that populations of lesser and greater scaup have continued to decline over the last two decades. The causes of these declines are particular concern to the management of wetland in the boreal forests of Alaska and Canada because boreal regions host the largest breeding population of scaup on the continent and because birds in this area have shown the sharpest declines in recent decades.

This project will

1. Describe the physiological condition of pre-breeding female scaup at the Long Lake study site and two other sites on the Yukon Flats NWR, May-June 2007-2008.

2. Compare present condition of scaup to condition recently measured during spring migration on the Mississippi Flyway and to past measures of condition at Long Lake.

3. Examine the effects of physiological condition of female scaup, shifts in their diet, and contaminants on subsequent breeding probability, clutch size and nesting success, Yukon Flats NWR, June-July 2007-2008.

Project Funding

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
31 Dec 2006 – 30 Apr 2009
IAB Proposal #07-043
UAF Grant #G3903
IAB Project #130

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
IAB Proposal #07-043
IAB Project #130

Media Contact

Marie Thoms
Communications/Web Manager
Institute of Arctic Biology
302A Irving I
University of Alaska Fairbanks
Fairbanks, AK 99775-7000
email: methoms@alaska.edu
phone: 907.474.7412