Micro-Habitat Characteristics of Mountain Plover Nest Sites

Volume 18, No. 1-4, Manuscript

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Ecology, habitat, grazing, Soil sciences, Mountain plover, plovers, plover, plant height, soil surface, visual obstruction, Charadrius montanus, Colorado

Scientific Disciplines

Biological Sciences - Terrestrial

Abstract Text

This study was conducted on shortgrass prairie in northeast Colorado to determine micro-habitat characteristics of nest sites for mountain plover (Charadrius montanus Townsend). Vegetation and soil surface characteristics were sampled in the spring of 1996-97 at and near 16 nests to identify important micro-habitat characteristics for site selection. We collected data on plant structure and canopy cover near nests in the spring during 2 years. Mean bare ground within a 15 m radius of the nest was 24 percent and bare ground patch size was 29 cm2. Mountain plovers selected nest sites that had short plant structure and a mean visual obstruction reading (VOR) of 0.6 cm. Plant structure (VOR) from 4 m to 15 m was significantly greater than structure at 0 to 2 m from the nest.

Meeting Info

The research was in cooperation with Colorado State University Agricultural Experiment Station, Cooperative Agreement No. 28-C5-884.


Javersak, J. J., Uresk, D. W., & Trlica, M. J. 2012. Micro-Habitat Characteristics of Mountain Plover Nest Sites. Intermountain Journal of Sciences 18(1-4): 26-30.