Date: 5/29/19 2:19 pm
From: Joseph Neal <joeneal...>
For those you with an interest in Painted Buntings, there is an MS thesis you can read at “Vegetation Characteristics and Bird Communities Associated with Singing Painted Buntings in Northwest Arkansas,” an MS thesis completed by Lauren Kristina Thead at UA-Fayetteville. She began her project working with late Dr Kimberly G. Smith.

Thead’s field work involved spring-summer 2014-2016. She found singing Painted Buntings in a variety of places, from Frog Bayou WMA in the Arkansas River Valley to Callie’s Prairie at Lake Fayetteville (and many others). Once she found singing males, she studied the bird community and the vegetation composition of these territories.

The thesis includes two chapters. (1) Vegetation characteristics associated with singing Painted Buntings … and (2) bird communities associated with singing Painted Buntings… Overall, she documented 77 species at her study sites. Most abundant and most often found were Northern Cardinal, European Starling, Indigo Bunting, Carolina Chickadee, Painted Bunting, American Goldfinch, Carolina Wren, Northern Mockingbird, American Crow, and Brown-headed Cowbird.

“The prevalence of Brown-headed Cowbirds … at my study sites is potentially a cause for concern. I suggest that further research should be done on the nesting habits of Painted Buntings in northwest Arkansas to examine both the impact of cowbird parasitism on their populations and the effect of land management practices on Brown-headed Cowbirds.”

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