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U.S. Prairie Pothole Joint Venture
Implementation Plan

Implementation Guidelines for Management Strategies

Populations


Monitoring

Develop monitoring and evaluation methods to document population responses of other wildlife to habitat and management for waterfowl, and incorporate those methods into PPJV monitoring and evaluation plans.

Directed Studies

Evaluate in each state all waterfowl management practices for potential adverse effects on other wildlife, especially those targeted under Objective #2. Determine means of avoiding, offsetting, or mitigating these effects to ensure at least a neutral cumulative effect.

Models/Surveys

Obtain, and where practical, develop information on population limiting factors and population responses to waterfowl habitat development and management actions for species to be managed under Objective #2.

Support development of quantitative population objectives by agencies and organizations with management interests and responsibilities for other species of wetland dependant wildlife and other declining wildlife endemic to the PPR.

Predator Management

   Right Arrow Bullet   Exclosures

Exclosures are designed to separate nesting hens and nests from ground predators. Electric fences are the most commonly used barrier. Exclosures represent an intensive management effort that requires initial expense and regular maintenance throughout the nesting season. Mallards and gadwalls are the primary duck species attracted to fenced areas, but other species of birds, including non-waterfowl migratory birds, also benefit. A density of 1 - 2 duck nests per acre should be targeted.

Right Arrow Bullet   Location

Right Arrow Bullet   Size

Right Arrow Bullet   Management


   Right Arrow Bullet   Fenced Peninsulas

   Right Arrow Bullet   Location


   Right Arrow Bullet   Peninsula Cutoffs

This treatment creates a water barrier that in essence converts a peninsula into an island. Gadwall, mallards, and blue-winged teal are the principal species nesting on cutoffs. Other duck species, such as pintail and lesser scaup, are found in lesser proportions.

Right Arrow Bullet   Location

Right Arrow Bullet   Size

Right Arrow Bullet   Management

Consult with Ducks Unlimited, Inc. or Service for techniques and specifications for creating cut-offs.


   Right Arrow Bullet   Nest Structures

Properly designed nest structures provide nest sites for mallards that are secure from ground predators if properly placed. Hay bales may not provide adequate protection from raccoon and mink.

Right Arrow Bullet   Location

Right Arrow Bullet   Management

For information on availability and installation of nest structures, contact Service, ND Game and Fish Department, SD Department of Game and Parks.


   Right Arrow Bullet   Create Islands

Small, man-made islands provide secure nesting sites that are used particularly by mallards, gadwall, and lesser scaup. Other duck species and Canada geese will also use islands in lower concentrations. Some islands attract extremely large numbers of nesting ducks (> 30 nests per acre).

Right Arrow Bullet   Location

Right Arrow Bullet   Size

Right Arrow Bullet   Management

Consult with Ducks Unlimited, Inc. or Service for information on construction techniques, permits, etc., that are involved in island creation.


   Right Arrow Bullet   Manage Natural Islands

Natural islands occurring in wetlands often represent "ready made" secure nesting sites that are attractive to several duck species. While some islands are adequate "as is," most require some form of enhancement or management to obtain maximum benefits. These efforts can be costly, so prioritizing sites is important.

   Right Arrow Bullet   Location

Right Arrow Bullet   Size

Right Arrow Bullet   Management

Right Arrow Bullet   Other


   Right Arrow Bullet   Skunk Control

Skunks are the primary nest predator in some areas. Skunks are easy to trap in early spring (April) and, when combined with other management effort, skunk removal can provide an extra margin of security for nesting hens.

Right Arrow Bullet   Location

Right Arrow Bullet   When


   Right Arrow Bullet   Red Fox Control

Red fox are a major cause of nest loss and kill many nesting hens in some parts of the Prairie Pothole Region of North America. Broad scale control of fox is generally not practical. However, special circumstances may warrant fox removal that benefit ground nesting ducks. Data should be collected to establish the effectiveness of the effort in each case.

Right Arrow Bullet   Location


   Right Arrow Bullet   Coyote Management

Field studies indicate that areas dominated by coyotes will generally have higher nest success than similar areas dominated by red fox. Coyotes tend to displace red fox, yet coyote densities are usually lower in the areas they dominate (in the PPJV). It is not clear whether densities will increase as coyotes become better established.

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