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Using light-level geolocators to measure breeding propensity of mottled ducks in the Western Gulf Coast
Of the vital rates that determine recruitment, breeding propensity (i.e., the proportion of females that lay at least one egg) and nest success appear to have the greatest influence, but breeding propensity remains poorly studied. The few studies that have been conducted reveal it to be highly variable among years (15–77%), likely in response to environmental conditions (e.g., precipitation and wetland availability), and lower than estimates from other dabbling ducks. Thus, quantifying breeding propensity across the mottled duck range in the WGC and identifying factors responsible for its variation remain high priorities for future investigation. Breeding propensity is also among the most difficult vital rates to...