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Owen P Mckenna

Research Ecologist

Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center

Office Phone: 701-253-5527
ORCID: 0000-0002-5937-9436

NPWRC - Riverside Bldg
8711 37Th Street SE
Jamestown , ND 58401

Supervisor: Max Post van der Burg
An estimated 50–80% of North America’s ducks use the millions of wetland basins in the Prairie Pothole Region as breeding habitat. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) National Wildlife Refuge System has conserved approximately 1.3 million hectares of grasslands and wetlands in the United States portion of the Prairie Pothole Region with the primary purpose to support breeding duck habitat. A major assumption inherent to the current conservation approach is that wetlands that have historically provided the highest value to breeding ducks will continue to do so into the future. The dynamic nature of climate in the Northern Great Plains and continued increases in air temperatures and precipitation variability...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation
Many amphibian species are highly susceptible to changes in precipitation timing and volume because of their reliance on intermittently flooded surface water pools, which are primarily filled through snowmelt and precipitation runoff. ​With increasing evapotranspiration (i.e. transfer of water from land to the atmosphere) due to climate change, the timing and availability of water in key amphibian reproductive habitats will likely be altered. This project will assess the future risk to amphibian populations in the Midwest, identifying present and future richness hotspots and those wetland species and populations most at risk of habitat loss due to climate change. The research team will model landscape level changes...
Grasslands, and the depressional wetlands that exist throughout them, are endangered ecosystems that face both climate and land-use change pressures. Tens of millions of dollars are invested annually to manage the existing fragments of these ecosystems to serve as critical breeding habitat for migratory birds. The North American Prairie Pothole Region (PPR) contains millions of depressional wetlands that produce between 50% and 80% of the continent’s waterfowl population. Previous modeling efforts suggested that climate change would result in a shift of suitable waterfowl breeding habitat from the central to the southeast portion of the PPR, an area where over half of the depressional wetlands have been drained....
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation
The application of two management strategies were tested across nine, Class III, wetland catchments located at the Woodworth Study Area (Stutsman County, ND). This field study took place during 2014 and 2015. 2014 was a pre-treatment year and snow measurements were taken in all experimental catchments in the late February 2015, before treatments were applied. Temporary electric fences were installed surrounding each wetland catchment to exclude them from grazing that took place on the management unit in 2015. All the catchments had been managed in a similar manner since purchased by USFWS in 1964. The primary management strategy of the wetland catchments from 1964–2013 was non-use with occasional prescribed burning....
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