UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Dispersion of the western winter wren (Troglodytes troglodytes pacificus [Baird]) in coastal western hemlock forest at the University of British Columbia Research Forest in south-western British Columbia McLachlin, Roderick Archibald


I studied the dispersion of winter wrens in 100-year-old, second-growth, coastal western hemlock forest at the University of British Columbia Research Forest in southwestern British Columbia from 1978-81. Male winter wrens were territorial on non-overlapping territories at an average density of 60 per km2. An average of 8% were polygamous. Females occupied generally non-overlapping home ranges at least during the breeding period, but were not shown territorial, although this possibility could not be excluded. Winter wrens were not uniformly distributed but showed differential use of various individual ecosystems (as mapped by Klinka 1976) and ecosystems grouped by forest floor habitats. Surplus, potentially territorial males were available during the breeding period which could have occupied the empty or sparsely occupied areas. Invertebrate food was more abundant in habitats used by winter wrens as compared to avoided habitats, and, food is proposed as a factor in habitat selection by winter wrens. I propose that winter wrens are spaced by territoriality and clumped by suitable habitat, and suggest that these two factors influence the patterns of dispersion of winter wrens in coastal western hemlock forest, and perhaps elsewhere as well. Klinka's ecosystems and grouped ecosystems were proposed as indicative of the distribution of winter wrens, and perhaps of other wildlife species generally. If so, ecosystems can arid should be used as the base for the study and management of wildlife in the province of British Columbia, and perhaps elsewhere as well.

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