Publication: Changing Climate Could Lead to Shifts in Waterfowl Distributions

Folwell Callouts News
Duck flying over water
Mallard flying. (Photo credit: Alyenaa Buckles)

University of Missouri and Missouri Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit researchers on a MW CASC-funded project have found that continued climate change and other factors could lead to persistent shifts of waterfowl distributions. These shifts would impact hunting and management efforts in the region.

Bram Verheijen and Lisa Webb were among the researchers who analyzed over 60 years’ worth of data from 15 duck species. This data included 439,880 band and 1,965,461 wing recoveries from ducks in the North America’s Central and Mississippi flyways.

The research team found that when examined monthly, “the mean latitude of band and wing recovery distributions has shifted south in October and November, and north in December and January by several hundred kilometers for most species.” This means that ducks might be in areas at different times of the year and may vary in number compared to historical data, which will have important implications for landscape‐scale habitat conservation and population management.

Read the article in the Journal of Wildlife Management.


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