We investigated if relative abundance of invertebrate prey for Athene cunicularia floridana (Florida Burrowing Owl) differed between two pre-translocation (i.e., non-mined) sites and one translocation (i.e., reclaimed mine) site. We trapped a combination of 21 arthropod families and orders. We observed some differences among non-mined sites and the reclaimed mine site in invertebrate prey abundance and owl diet. Fewer than 50% (10 of 21) of trapped prey items were present in pellets, suggesting that our traps may have limited capture of particular prey. Additionally, it appears that owls were hunting in nearby aquatic habitats due to the remains of frogs, turtles, and crayfish in pellets. The general similarity in prey abundance and diet between the pre-translocation and translocation sites suggests that reclaimed mine sites may serve as adequate refugia for Florida Burrowing Owls. However, more work is needed to determine to verify the general applicability of our results.
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Vol. 11 • No. 4