Use of Predator Exclosures to Protect Piping Plover Nests in Alberta and Saskatchewan 1999


Isabelle Michaud and David Prescott


The Piping Plover is designated as 'endangered' in Canada, 'threatened' in the U.S. (COSEWIC
1999, U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service 1998) and is listed as 'endangered' under the Alberta
Wildlife Act. Nest predation has been identified as a significant limiting factor to Piping Plover
reproductive success in the Great Plains (Whyte 1985, Haig 1992, Heckbert 1994, Richardson
1999). Results from studies carried out in east-central Alberta from 1995 to 1997 showed that
through the use of predator exclosures, Piping Plover nest predation can be significantly reduced
thus increasing productivity (Heckbert and Cantelon 1996, Richardson 1999). Consequently, a
management project implementing the use of predator exclosures on a large-scale basis in
Alberta was initiated in 1998 and is ongoing.

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