Document Type



Master of Science (MS)



First Advisor's Name

Victor Apanius

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Daniel Childers

Third Advisor's Name

Joel Trexler

Date of Defense



It is widely believed that wading birds in the Everglades have declined as a result of historic water management practices. I determined growth rates for Snowy Egret (Egretta thula) chicks by assessed the nestling body condition through measurement of body weight and skeletal traits. A growth index was calculated as a residual of body weight regressed on age. A body condition index was calculated as the residual of body weight regressed on a skeletal trait (tarsus). Growth was significantly related to water level and hatch date. Survival rates were calculated to day 14, 21, and 50. Survival to 50 days of age was significantly related to hatch date and order. Survival to 21 days of age was significantly related to water level and hatching order. Survival to 14 days of age was marginally related to hatching order. Growth and survival is greatly influenced by water level and hatch date.




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