Subsampling Reduces Sorting Effort for Waterfowl Foods in Salt-Marsh Core Samples
Journal of Fish and Wildlife Management
Waterfowl researchers often use soil core samples to estimate food availability in foraging habitats, and these estimates are needed for bioenergetic models of carrying capacity. However, core sampling is frequently a time- and resource-intensive process, and some researchers have suggested that subsampling may be a valuable way to reduce processing time. We evaluated whether 10% and 25% by mass subsampling are appropriate techniques for reducing core-sorting effort while maintaining precision for samples taken in six separate habitat types along the Delaware bayshore. We found no significant difference between biomass found in 100% sorted cores and estimated biomass obtained by 10% and 25% subsampling. We found that 10% subsampling offered the greatest time savings, reducing mean sorting times by 77% (from 13.7 hours to 3.3 hours) from 100% sorted cores. We recommend that researchers consider subsampling to reduce core-sorting effort and cost, particularly when processing large numbers of cores.
This article was originally published in Journal of Fish and Wildlife Management. The version of record is available at: https://doi.org/10.3996/012014-JFWM-002.
bioenergetics, carrying capacity, core sample, food availability, invertebrate, moist-soil seed, waterfowl, life on land
Mark C. Livolsi, Kevin M. Ringelman, Christopher K. Williams; Subsampling Reduces Sorting Effort for Waterfowl Foods in Salt-Marsh Core Samples. Journal of Fish and Wildlife Management 1 December 2014; 5 (2): 380–386. doi: https://doi.org/10.3996/012014-JFWM-002