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Document Type

Thesis - University Access Only

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School

Wildlife and Fisheries Science

First Advisor

Daniel E. Hubbard


The purpose of this study was to determine aspects of the biological diversity of Minnesota Waterfowl Production Areas. Specific objectives include: (1) determine the presence of amphibian, reptilian, and mammalian species on study sites; (2) estimate the diversity of breeding birds on study sites; (3) estimate the number of breeding birds on study sites; and (4) determine associations among species, communities, and physiographic regions. Study sites were selected by stratified random sampling within 4 physiographic regions in Minnesota: the Prairie Coteau, Sioux Drift Plain - Minnesota River Plain, Agassiz Lake Plain, and Border Prairie. Small mammals, amphibians, and reptiles were sampled using baited snap traps, pitfall traps, and funnel traps. Larger mammal presence was determined from field observations, tracks, droppings, dens, or lodges. Diversity was measured using species richness. While it appeared to have the highest species richness, the Border Prairie region was not significantly different from other regions. Species richness was directly related to WPA size. If diversity is a management goal, managers should attempt to both purchase as large a waterfowl production area as possible and create or purchase a mosaic of habitats on those areas to insure high diversity levels of breeding birds.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Waterfowl -- Prairie Pothole Region
Vertebrates -- Prairie Pothole Region
Biodiversity -- Prairie Pothole Region


Includes bibliographical references (page 57-63)



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University


Copyright © 1994 Sherry L. Niesar. All rights reserved.