Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units Program: Arkansas
Education, Research and Technical Assistance for Managing Our Natural Resources

Krementz DG, Asante K Naylor LW. 2012. Autumn Migration of Midcontinent Mallards Determined by Satellite Telemetry. Journal of Fish and Wildlife Management 3:238-251.


We used satellite telemetry to study autumn migration timing, routes, stopover duration and final destinations of midcontinent Mallards (Anas platyrynchos) from 2004 to 2007. Of those Mallards that were alive on 15 Sep (n = 55), the average date when autumn migration began was 23 Oct (SE = 2.62 days; range 17 Sep - 7 Dec). For those Mallards that stopped for >1 day on migration, the average length was 15.5 days (SE = 1.45). Ten Mallards migrated non-stop to wintering sites. The eastern Dakotas were an important stopover area. The total distance migrated per Mallard averaged 1,407 km (SE = 89.55 km; range 142 – 2947 km). The average time spent on migration per individual between 15 Sep and 15 Dec was 27 days (SE = 2.88 days; range 2 – 84 days). The state where most Mallards were located on 15 Dec was Missouri (eleven) followed by Arkansas (eight), while five Mallards were still in Canada. By 15 Dec, only eight of 43 females and zero of ten males were present in Arkansas. Since the eastern Dakotas were an important autumn migration stopover for midcontinent Mallards, this region might be considered for increased conservation attention. The reasons for so few Mallards, especially male Mallards, returning to Arkansas the following year deserves further research.