With the decline of many lekking species, the need to develop a rigorous population estimation technique is critical for successful conservation and management. We employed mark–resight methods to estimate population size for 2 lekking species: greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) and Gunnison sage-grouse (Centrocercus minimus). We evaluated 2 different estimators: Bowden's estimator and the mixed logit-normal mark–resight model. We captured and marked 75 greater sage-grouse. We counted marked and unmarked birds as they attended 15 known leks. We used 36 and 37 marked Gunnison sage-grouse to estimate population size in 2003 and 2004, respectively. We observed marked and unmarked Gunnison sage-grouse daily as they attended 6 leks in 2003 and 3 leks in 2004. Based on our examination of the assumptions of each mark–resight estimator, relative to behavior and biology of these species, we concluded the mixed logit-normal mark–resight model is preferred. We recommend wildlife managers employ mark–resight approaches when statistically rigorous population estimates are required for management and conservation of lekking species.
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