An Evaluation of a Wood Duck Nesting Program in Eastern Tennessee

Wood duck (Aix sponsa) nest boxes (N = 190) were placed along the lower Holston River and the lower French Broad River in eastern Tennessee and were maintained and checked from 1976 to 1979. Wood ducks used 1.3% of the boxes inspected during the 4-year study. Night brood counts ranged from 0.42 to 0.68 broods/km of river and did not indicate an increase in brood production. Nest box use and brood production in this study were significantly less than reported for a study on the upper Holston River. We believe that aquatic vegetation, valuable as a food base for wood duck broods, was a more limiting factor in our study than the availability of nest cavities.

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