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Reproduction of northern bobwhites in semiarid environments

Reproduction of northern bobwhites in semiarid environments

Journal of Wildlife Management 52(1): 144-149

We studied adult northern bobwhite (Colinus virginianus) in 2 semiarid environments (.hivin.x annu. net evaporation = 140 and 90 cm) during 1981-83 to determine climatic effects on phenology and intensity of reproduction. In the drier environment, gonadal recrudescence began 1-2 weeks earlier and the effective breeding season ended about 2 months earlier. A smaller percentage of females entered laying condition in the drier environment (P < 0.005), but > 95% of males had testes large enough to contain motile sperm in both environments during peaks of reproduction (Apr-Jun). A substantial decline in laying in July-August in the drier environment probably reflected an adaptive response to harsh late-summer habitat conditions as well as a physiological response to high ambient temperatures and dietary moisture stress.

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Accession: 006315927

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DOI: 10.2307/3801075

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