This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Provide supplementary food for songbirds to increase adult survival

Action Link
Bird Conservation
  1. Provide supplementary food for songbirds to increase adult survival

    A replicated study in mountain forests in Tennessee, USA, in 1999-2001 (Podolsky et al. 2004) found that 92% of 24 breeding pairs of ovenbirds Seiurus aurocapilla and 79% of 38 wood thrush Hylocichla mustelina pairs fed on live mealworm Tenebrio monitor larvae from feeding stations consisting of moss placed over overhead projector film (clear plastic film) and placed on the ground near nests (6-12 m away from wood thrush nests, 3-6 m from ovenbird nests). Mealworms could burrow into the moss to avoid desiccation but could not escape because of the film. Previous work showed that birds avoided artificial feeders such as bowls and baskets, but removed 70-100% of mealworms within four hours from moss. Food was provided daily and nests were monitored for six (ovenbird) or eight (wood thrush) days.


Output references

What Works in Conservation

What Works in Conservation provides expert assessments of the effectiveness of actions, based on summarised evidence in synopses. Subjects covered so far include amphibians, birds, terrestrial mammals, forests, peatland and control of freshwater invasive species. More are in progress.

More about What Works in Conservation

Download free PDF or purchase
The Conservation Evidence Journal

The Conservation Evidence Journal

An online, free to publish in, open-access journal publishing results from research and projects that test the effectiveness of conservation actions.

Read latest volume: Volume 17

Go to the CE Journal

Subscribe to our newsletter

Please add your details if you are interested in receiving updates from the Conservation Evidence team about new papers, synopses and opportunities.

Who uses Conservation Evidence?

Meet some of the evidence champions

Endangered Landscape Programme Red List Champion - Arc Kent Wildlife Trust The Rufford Foundation Save the Frogs - Ghana Bern wood Supporting Conservation Leaders National Biodiversity Network Sustainability Dashboard Frog Life The international journey of Conservation - Oryx British trust for ornithology Cool Farm Alliance UNEP AWFA Butterfly Conservation People trust for endangered species Vincet Wildlife Trust