Publication Year

Fall 1968





Document Type



The Ovenbird was selected for intensive study at the UWM Field Station for a variety of reasons. First, it is closely adapted in all respects-morphological, physiological, behavioral- to the upland forest environment, reaching maximum numbers in climax forests, such as the maple-beech forest which is under special investigation at the station. Second, because of its song it can be accurately censused and annual variations in numbers can be detected. Third, unlike most of the hard-wood forest birds, which spend most of their time in the tree canopy, the Ovenbird both nests and feeds on the ground, thus making it more susceptible to capture by mist nets or other trapping techniques. Fourth, its annual cycle of physiology is of special interest. It is a long-distance migrant with a pronounced fat cycle; the members of the population are very highly synchronized physiologically. Fifth, there are still some mysteries in the life history of the Ovenbird, the most notable being: where do the adults go at the end of the nesting period while they are molting?