We evaluated the moisture-facilitated nest depredation hypothesis in a semiarid environment in the Southern High Plains of Texas during 1999 and 2000. Scaled Quail (Callipepla squamata) provided an excellent model species for this evaluation because they typically suffer significant nest mortality and inhabit semiarid to xeric environments. We monitored 102 nests until they either hatched or were predated. Nest mortalities occurred on 30 days and precipitation fell on 51 days during the two-year study. Stepwise logistic regression revealed a predictive relationship for a model with central precipitation on the day of nest predation as a predictor. However, in contrast to our predictions, the equation indicates precipitation is negatively associated with nest predation in this data set. Thus, our data do not support the moisture-facilitated nest depredation hypothesis for Scaled Quail in the semiarid, Southern High Plains of Texas.
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