Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science



First Advisor

Lesley P. Bulluck

Second Advisor

James R. Vonesh


Many organisms use both vegetation structure and social cues in selecting habitats. Many species of songbirds use the presence of breeding conspecifics as a social cue and sign of habitat quality, and can be induced to settle in unoccupied habitats by artificially broadcasting breeding song, a process referred to as “conspecific attraction”. In our study, we tested response to conspecific attraction a low-density population of the threatened Golden-winged Warbler (Vermivora chrysoptera) in Highland County, VA. Response to broadcast song was observed, with a modest increase in mean male abundance at survey points within 250 meters of treatments, and mean abundance decreasing outside of this range throughout the study area. Recruitment to conspecific playback was lower in our study than observed in previous research on high-density systems. Our results suggest more research is needed of the effectiveness of conspecific attraction in low density species and that its use should be tailored to the spatial and demographic conditions of the managed population.


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Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

May 2014

Included in

Biology Commons