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INHS Bulletin vol.27:4PDF


Title:Food Habits of Migratory Ducks in Illinois
Author(s):Anderson, Harry George
Food Habits
Abstract:TWENTY-FIVE years ago the waterfowl population of North America had dropped to such a low point that management of this resource became an important concern of both state and federal wildlife agencies. As a basis for an effective, long-time program of management for the waterfowl of the Mississippi Flyway, detailed information about the diet of ducks that migrate through Illinois was considered essential. More than 30 years of drainage, siltation, and pollution had materially reduced the extent and quality of the Illinois feeding grounds that waterfowl had used for centuries. Fortunately for some species of ducks, in the 1930's, mechanical corn pickers came into widespread use in the state. Mechanical picking left more waste corn in the fields and made it more easily available than did picking by hand. Mallards and black ducks were quick to take advantage of the new food supply. Previous to 1938, only a small amount of research had been done on the food habits of ducks using Illinois as a stopover on their migration flights. An analysis of the contents of 185 duck gizzards collected in Illinois had been made by Martin & Uhler (1939:5), and a study of the contents of 79 duck gizzards collected from the Starved Rock Pool near Ottawa and the Duck Island area near Banner, Illinois, had been made by Bellrose (1938). The need for more data on the food habits of waterfowl in Illinois resulted in the investigation herein reported.
Issue Date:1959-08
Publisher:Champaign : Illinois Natural History Survey
Series/Report:Illinois Natural History Survey Bulletin; v. 027, no. 04
Publication Status:published or submitted for publication
Peer Reviewed:is peer reviewed
Rights Information:Copyright 2009 University of Illinois Board of Trustees. All rights reserved.
Date Available in IDEALS:2013-05-24

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