Buffer Width and the Persistence of Black Duck Populations in Forested Wetlands of New Brunswick, Canada

The American Black Duck is the most abundant breeding waterfowl species in New Brunswick (NB), and, although previously common throughout New Brunswick (NB), notable declines in breeding black duck abundance have been reported in the commercially forested area of NB in the last 20 years. In NB, forestry operations must maintain >=30m buffers around waterbodies. These areas are important to waterfowl as nesting habitat and as a barrier to sources of disturbance in areas adjacent to wetlands. It is unknown if NB’s 30m requirement is adequate to maintain quality black duck habitat. Therefore, I will test this by monitoring the success of black duck nests and measuring black duck reactions to disturbance in areas with different buffer zone widths. This project will benefit Ducks Unlimited Canada by identifying key conservation areas for NB waterfowl.

Faculty Supervisor:

Joseph Nocera


Kelly McLean


Ducks Unlimited Canada


Environmental sciences


Life sciences




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