Survival, dispersal, and home-range establishment of reintroduced captive-bred puaiohi, Myadestes palmeri

Erik J. Tweed, Jeffrey T. Foster, Bethany L. Woodworth, Paul Oesterle, Cynthia Kuehler, Alan A. Lieberman, A. Tracey Powers, Kristin Whitaker, William B. Monahan, Jherime Kellerman, Tom Telfer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations


We monitored the survival, dispersal, and home-range establishment of captive-bred, reintroduced puaiohi Myadestes palmeri, a critically endangered thrush endemic to the island of Kauai. Fourteen captive-bred, juvenile birds were released from hacktowers in January-February 1999 and monitored for 8-10 weeks using radiotelemetry. All 14 birds (100%) survived to 56 days post-release. Two birds (14.3%) dispersed greater than 3 km from release site within 1 day of release. The remaining birds settled within 1 week and established either temporary home-ranges (mean area = 7.9±12.0 ha, range 0.4-31.9) or breeding home-ranges (mean area 1.2±0.34 ha, range 0.8-1.6). Temporary home ranges were abandonded by the beginning of the breeding season, and ultimately 6 of the 14 birds (43%) established breeding home ranges in the release area. The high survival rate bodes well for establishing additional populations through captive breeding and release; however, the 57% dispersal rate out of the target area means that several releases of birds may be necessary in order to repopulate a given drainage. Furthermore, observed dispersal and gene flow between the reintroduced and wild populations have important implications for management of the captive flock. Published by Elsevier Science Ltd.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalBiological Conservation
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 2003


  • Captive-bred
  • Dispersal
  • Home-range
  • Puaiohi
  • Reintroduction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Nature and Landscape Conservation


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