A comparison of techniques for estimating house mouse numbers on mana island using mark-recapture methods
- Department of Zoology, Victoria University, Private Bag, Wellington, New Zealand
[Abstract of a paper read at the Ecological Society Conference, 1983.]
Estimates of house mouse (Mus musculus) abundance were derived from six estimating equations applied to data obtained from a live-trapping study on Mana Island, Cook Strait, carried out from March 1981 to February 1982. The estimating equations included one deterministic model (Weighted Mean), two stochastic models (Jolly Seber & Manly-Parr), two regression methods (Zippin & Marten) and a nonparametric method (Burnham-Overton). All estimates were compared with the minimum number of mice known to be alive. The stochastic models gave higher estimates for the initial months (April to June). All methods gave similar estimates during the middle period of trapping when population numbers were low. The results suggest that the probability of capture differs amongst members of the population and changes after capture. The effect of this on the population estimates is discussed.