Wildlife 1

Broad definition of wildlife
all plants and animals
Specific definition of wildlife
only game animals, NOT fishes, mostly free ranging birds and mammals
3 facets of Wildlife Management
Human dimension, habitats, animals
2 types of Wildlife Management
active and passive
Active wildlife management
1)Change population numbers DIRECTLY: harvest (hunting) or translocations
2) Change population numbers INDIRECTLY: food supply, change habitat composition, density of predators.
Passive wildlife management
1) Preservation
2) minimize external influences on wildlife and habitat
3) let natural processes take place
4) may be appropriate in some cases- endangered species
4 ways to manage wildlife
1) population increase- endangered species
2) population decrease- damage problems; deer, beaver, coyote
3) harvest for continuing yield- game species
4) leave it alone- monitor status
3 decisions for setting goals
1) choose desired goal- gather info
2) which management goal or option is appropriate?
3) what action will best achieve the management goal?
Era of Abundance ( 1600-1849)
wildlife treated as though always plentiful, populations declined with settlement, local exterminations not a concern just move somewhere else
Era of Abundance events
1630- earliest record of wildlife mgmt. Mass Bay colony established bounty for large predators to try to reduce numbers.
1646- first closed hunting season in RI colony
1708- closed seasons on upland game birds in some NY colonies
Era of Exploitation (1850-1885)
market hunting and sport hunting flourished, bison declined from millions to almost extinct, decline of wildlife accelerated by improved weapons and railroads, few attempts to conserve wildlife
Era of Exploitation events
first game wardens established in Maine, NY first state to require hunting licenses, first daily bag limits imposed in Iowa on prairie chickens
Era of Protection (1885-1929)
people realized game populations were declining, obvious reason was over exploitation, remedy=legal protection
Important people of the Era of Protection
John Muir- Sierra Club 1892
George Grinnell & Teddy Roosevelt- Boone and Crockett Club 1887
Era of Protection events
first federal wildlife refuge in Pelican Island, FL, state game and fish depts assumed jurisdiction over resident wildlife, Teddy R. set aside 230 million acres.
Lacey Act (1900)
decreased market hunting by making interstate transportation of illegally killed game a federal offense
Weeks-McLean Act (1913)
federal control over migratory birds and ended spring waterfowl hunting
Migratory Bird Treaty Act (1918)
established cooperation between Canada and US for management of migratory birds
Era of Game Management (1930-1965)
legal protection by itself was insufficient to stop declining wildlife populations, needed info about basic requirements of animals to properly manage
Era of Management events
Aldo Leopold published “Game Management” which signaled birth of professional wildlife conservation (game species)
Duck Stamp Act (1934)
all waterfowl hunters had to purchase and proceeds went to wetland habitats
Pittman-Robertson Act (1937)
most important event in this era, 11% excise tax on sporting arms and ammunition, funds given back to states on matching basis (3:1) for wildlife research and restoration; has generated > $2 billion for wildlife conservation since it began
Era of Environmental Mgmt (1966-present)
emphasis not just on game species, biodiversity, ecosystem mgmt, science-based mgmt, nongame and endangered species
Era of Environmental Mgmt events
state wildlife agencies broadened their programs to include more species, Environmental Protection Agency 1970, Food Security Act 1985
Endangered Species Act ( 1966)
authorized Secretary of Interior to keep a list of rare and endangered species; initially gave no legal protection or federal aid, but started a commitment
National Environmental Policy Act (1970)
established Council of Environmental Quality; required Environmental Impact Statements for federally-assisted projects likely to have environmental effects
3 types of wildlife management funding
1) traditional
2) non traditional
3) federal aid
Who is Gary Moody?
Chief of Wildlife Section of the Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries for the Alabama Dept. of Conservation & Natural Resources
Traditional funding
About 70% of funding comes from; 1)Licenses and permits- used by all states
2)Legislative appropriations- general fund, collected from every citizen, Alabama doesn’t receive money from the general fund
Non-traditional funding
About 10% of funding come from;
1) taxes on commodities, property taxes, income taxes, check-offs
2) TX taxes tobacco, MO & AR 1% of sales tax generates 50-100 mill/yr, LA oil and gas tax
Federal aid funding
About 20% of funding comes from, all states receive it, Pittman-Robertson- in Alabama generated $9.5 million in 2011
CARA lite: Conservation Trust Fund
State Wildlife Grants- federal program, all states divide money, focuses mgmt on species in greatest need of conservation (before they become endangered)
Cooperative Wildlife Research Units (1935)
helps train wildlife professionals, Alabama unit established in Auburn in 1936
7 Principles of the North American Model of Wildlife Conservation
1) wildlife as a public trust resource (heart of the model)
2) elimination of markets for game
3) laws to regulate hunting
4) kill only for legitimate purposes
5) establishing wildlife as an international resource
6) science-based wildlife mgmt
7) democracy of hunting
Forever Wild Land Trust
interest from Alabama Trust Fund (usually < $15 M annually) provides the means for servicing state conservation and hunting lands from willing sellers; 1 million acres of public hunting lands or 15,000 per county;
Forever Wild Stewardship Fund
2nd fund to Forever Wild; once tracts are acquired, 15% of appraised value is transferred here
Forever Wild purchases land for:
nature preserves, recreation areas, state parks, and wildlife mgmt areas
examples of Relative Economic values
1) Pacific NW; wildlife & old growth ecosystems vs. timber industry and jobs
2) Alabama; AL sturgeon & AL beach mice (both endangered) vs. dredging for navigation
3) Arctic NWR; drilling for oil vs. wildlife and wilderness
US Army Corps of Engineers
Destroys bottomland habitats to create flood control projects; benefits > costs
compensating the environmental impact by replacing or substituting resources; economic units are habitat units
Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP)
used by the USFWS to calculate habitat units
Habitat units
obtained by multiplying the number of acres in the project by the Habitat Sustainability Index
Total Benefit Value or Maximum Willingness to Pay
the difference between the max amount a consumer would pay and the amount they actually pay for the commodity
Direct Expenditures
estimate amount spent on wildlife-related activities; value of wildlife is equivalent to the total spent
National Survey of Fishing, Hunting & Wildlife-Associated Recreation
survey showed that in Alabama: 5% decline in anglers, and 8% decline in hunters
Soil Texture
amounts of sand, silt, clay; Indirect- through effects on vegetation and plant communities; Direct- burrowing animals
Soil Chemistry
pH and nutrients; good soil nutrients=better quality and quantity of plant foods which support more/bigger animals; help increase carrying capacity
Copper, zinc, iron, calcium; catalysts for various physiological functions
Nitrogen, phosphorous, potassium; fertilization can help, but expensive on large scale
Original Conversion of landscapes/habitats
farms were small, changes created more habitat diversity, initially good for species that depended on early successional habitats
Later Conversion of landscapes/habitats
increased mechanization, landscape changed more quickly, larger fields, less habitat diversity, clean farming practices- use of herbicides, leave little to no buffers bordering fields,
Large mechanized farming and ranching tends to:
fragment habitats and decrease diversity of habitat
Example of fragmentation
Brown-headed cowbirds; increased parasitism in nests, fragments make nests easier to find
Soil Bank Program
29 million acres enrolled; retired land from production and required the land to be given adequate cover to reduce soil erosion; early successional species increased in abundance
Conservation Reserve Program
provides payments to farmers who stop ag. production and establish cover crop; usually enrolled for a 10 year period; reduces soil erosion, controls supply of ag. commodities, conserves wildlife
conversion of plant biomass to fuels like ethanol and methanol; makes better economic sense for farmers than CRP; takes land from CRP, monocultures
Mandated by Energy Independence Security Act
36 billion gallons of biofuels by 2022
2 basic problems of using pesticides
1) pesticides like DDT affected non-target organisms like wildlife
2) insects developed resistance: simplistic approach
Integrated Pest Management
use a combonation of chemical, cultural, and biological methods
Proper food and nutrition has effects on
growth and development, reproductive output, survival
Selective feeding
animals are able to select plant parts and foods with higher nutrient content
featured species management
single species; determine foods eaten and supply them
Good food habits studied measure
1) availability of foods
2) breeding status of the animals
Food preferences
anytime consumption of a food item is greater than its availability, then you can infer that the food is preferred; consumption > availability
effects of nutrition
1) reproduction
2) growth and development of young- early effects are long lasting
includes cellulose, starches, and sugars
structural carbohydrate; cannot be digested by most vertebrates without certain bacteria in the digestive system to help break it down
Increase retention time
allowing more time to break down; increase length of small intestine
Use micro-organisms
(bacteria, fungi, protozoa) digest cellulose through fermentation
Foregut fermenters
or ruminants (4 chambered stomach); bovids ( cattle, sheep, antelope) and cervids (deer)
Hindgut fermenters
(enlarged colon or cecum) perissodactyls (horses, rhinos, tapirs)
ferment in colon
large animals (> 50kg)
ferment in cecum
small animals (< 50kg)
composed of amino acid groups (NH2 groups); animal tissues generally higher in protein than plants
clover, alfalfa, beans, peas fix atmospheric N and are high in protein
contain >2 times the energy/unit weight as carbohydrates; fat deposits are a good way to store energy
Trying to manage foods is a key element of
featured species management
Optimal foraging
select the patch with the greatest return rate= maximize rate of energy intake
Predation Risk
great foraging habitats may be partly or completely avoided because of risk of predation
decreases predation risk, and more time spent feeding and getting info
Optimal flock size
tradeoff between energy gains and competition for food
Social dominance: advantages of higher status
better habitats, less dispersal, better physical condition, less predation, increased survival and reproduction
Behavioral adjustments
1) selection of favorable microclimates (habitats); reduces heat loss/gain (ex. roost sites in winter)
2) changes in activity patterns; hot/cold environments
Physiological adjustments
1) reduce body temperature; conserves energy
when energy costs exceed intake
When does storage happen?
migration, winter, reproduction
Migration- storage
ex. Migrant warblers- consumption rate increases, feed on more profitable prey, the digestive system processes food more efficiently
ex. Ptarmigan- winter on high arctic islands, fat accumulated in fall and early winter; helps balance energy expenses,
ex. Wood ducks- fat helps meet the demands of reproduction, females accumulate fat on breeding areas, fat reserves provide 90% of lipid and energy requirements of producing 12 egg clutch
a place where an animal lives, often characterized by a dominant plant form or a physical characteristic
Compare habitat use with habitat availability
when use > availability we say the habitat is preferred
Infer habitat quality by comparing differences in population characteristics like:
breeding success, survival, and body condition
Factors involved in habitat selection
1) genetic: inherited or innate patterns
2) learning: from parents or social groups
3) competition: population density; dominance status
Plants provide ____ as well as _____
food; cover
Vegetative cover provides:
shelter from the weather, and concealment from predators and prey
What is the right mixture of preferred, good quality habitats?
30% shrubs, 40% emergents, 25% water, and 5% trees
Preferred habitat example: the Ruffed Grouse needs…
forests of different age classes
Mississippi Alluvial Valley wetlands provide wintering habitat for many ducks, the conditions of the wetlands affect…
mallard winter survival and reproduction the next spring
In relation to Bobwhites, Dry-hot conditions produce:
fewer nesting attempts, high nest abandonment, and lower hatching success
Precipitation affects:
reduces availability of habitats and the food base, reduces food quantity and quality
What is a wetland?
lands that are transitional between terrestrial and aquatic systems where the water table is usually at or near the surface or the land is covered by shallow water.
any water loving plant
Hydric soils
usually saturated with water for a period of the year and has low oxygen
Wetland types
salt marsh, wet meadow, shrub swamp, wooded swamp
Important functions of wetlands:
flood control, reduce erosion, help maintain water quality by absorbing nutrients and other chemicals
North American Waterfowl Management Plan
to manage and preserve wetlands to maintain viable waterfowl populations at population levels observed in the 1970s; accomplished through joint ventures.
Joint Ventures
partnerships between state, federal, and private organizations that work together to purchase and restore wetlands
Wetland Reserve Program
administered by Natural Resources Conservation Service; provides technical and financial assistance to landowners; receive financial incentives to restore wetlands in exchange for retiring marginal land from agriculture;
3 options of WRP
Permanent Easement, 30-year easement, or Cost-Share Agreement
Easement payments
are equal to the lowest of 3 amounts; 1) agricultural value of the land, 2) established pay cap, 3) an amount offered by the landowner
group of organisms of the same species that live together and reproduce and have little or no contact with other such groups
Birth and Immigration
processes act to increase population size
Deaths and emigration
processes act to decrease population size
If population size declines, the reason is that…
D + E > B + I, and vice versa
Population dynamics
study of changes in numbers of individuals in a population and the factors influencing those changes.
Diagrammatic life table
method of visualizing important population parameters
Conventional life table
describes the pattern of death by age class; it is a summary of the survivorship of a population
2 types of conventional life tables
1) cohort/dynamic life table- data are collected by following a cohort throughout its life
2) time-specific/static life table- age structure of population is estimated at one point in time
a group of individuals all born during the same time interval (same age)
fecundity rate (mx)
average number of female offspring produced per female at age x
gross reproductive rate
total number of female offspring that on average would be produced per female in the absence of mortality
realized fecundity (lxmx)
the average number of female offspring that a female would be expected to produce at age x
R0, net reproductive rate
mean number of female offspring produced by a female in her lifetime (i.e. the replacement rate)
Population growth: may be approximately continuous- dN/dt= B-D
B=bN; D=dN
Exponential Growth
dN/dt=(b-d)N or dN/dt=rN; “j-shaped” curve, the larger the population the faster its rate of increase
Projecting Population size
Discrete or geometric growth
Nt+1= lambdaNt; some organisms reproduce in distinct seasons
Logistic Growth
dN/dt= rN(1-N/k);
Environmental resistance
Density Dependent factors
“stabilizing factors”; biotic factors, factors that influence births, deaths, or both
Intrinsic mechanisms
the individual’s own response to density
2 forms of Intraspecific competition
1) exploitation
2) interference
each individual takes part of the resources, leaving less for others
more a matter of direct interaction, defense of food, mates or space
Extrinsic mechanisms
involves interactions with the rest of the community; predation, disease, interspecific competition
Density Independent
nonstabilizing factors, abiotic factors; act to change population size independet of population size or density
Cooperative behavior: result of extreme competition
lack of some critical resource, good quality breeding sites in short supply, so they help their parents raise young