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1 September 2003 LATITUDINAL VARIATION IN THE DEFINITIVE PREBASIC MOLT OF YELLOW WARBLERS
THOMAS B. RYDER, CHRISTOPHER C. RIMMER
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Abstract

We compared the definitive prebasic molt schedules of Yellow Warblers (Dendroica petechia) at two northern temperate breeding sites: the Vermont Institute of Natural Science (Vermont) in Woodstock, Vermont, and North Point (James Bay) on the southwestern coast of James Bay, Ontario. The two sites are separated by 8° of latitude. Yellow Warblers initiated molt significantly earlier in Vermont than at James Bay, with respective mean onset dates of 29 June and 20 July, but durations and rates of molt did not differ significantly between populations at the two sites. Mean individual molt durations spanned 44.5 days in Vermont and 40.0 days at James Bay. Molt rate of females differed significantly between the two sites, but male rates were similar. Based on number of primaries growing simultaneously, Yellow Warblers in both Vermont and James Bay appear to undergo a rapid and intense molt. The earlier and slightly more protracted molt of Yellow Warblers in Vermont may result from their earlier spring arrival and longer breeding season.

THOMAS B. RYDER and CHRISTOPHER C. RIMMER "LATITUDINAL VARIATION IN THE DEFINITIVE PREBASIC MOLT OF YELLOW WARBLERS," The Wilson Bulletin 115(3), 325-332, (1 September 2003). https://doi.org/10.1676/02-131
Received: 22 November 2002; Accepted: 1 March 2003; Published: 1 September 2003
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