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I studied the effect of habitat edge on nest predation rates ina population of House Wrens (Troglodytes aedon) which bred in nest boxes in central Illinois from 1986-1994. Each nest box was classified according to its distance from the nearest habitat edge, and edges were classified into either abrupt, gradual or riverine edge-types. Nest predation rates varied significantly annually for the the two major nest predator classes, apparent avian and snake, and Raccoon (Procyon lotor). Neither predator class showed significant differences in nest predation rates in relation to distance from the nearest edge. There was no significant effect of edge-type on nest predation rates by birds and snakes, but nests along riverine edges incurred significantly higher Raccoon nest predation rates. Although nest predation rates did not differ significantly for either predator class between gradual and abrupt edge-types, the potential importance of this variable warrants further studies in open-and ground-nesting species.



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