Sampling Tree Swallow Eggs and Nestlings TVA-KIF-SOP-28
Once all hatchlings are >15 days old, record survival of nestlings and randomly select one hatchling from 15 monitored nest boxes at each study area while wearing nitrile gloves.
Euthanize each nestling individually by placing each nestling in an open, pre- labeled resealable bag. (Do not seal bag until Step f below).
Verify that the label on each bag includes the specimen ID number, date, and collector initials.
Place the bag containing the nestling sample into an insulated box with dry ice (place small plastic bag or newspaper between ice and sample bag to keep from burning the specimens).
Once the nestling has succumbed from exposure to carbon dioxide, seal the resealable plastic bag.
Record information on the Tree Swallow Nestling Field Specimen Collection/ Processing form provided in Table 4 (and also located on the TVA Kingston SharePoint drive at http://sharepoint.tva.gov/sites/oer/KingstonEvent/KRP/ default.aspx under Environmental/Forms and Templates).
For nestling sample processing, proceed to Section 3.5.2.
The procedures listed below are followed for egg and nestling samples regardless of collection times to ensure proper maintenance of sample temperature.
Egg Sample Processing Eggs are processed individually while wearing nitrile gloves.
Remove each egg from transport container and resealable bag and label the egg with an ID number on each end of the egg using a permanent marker.
Weigh the egg on a digital analytical scale with an accuracy of ±0.001 g.
Measure the length and width of the egg to within 0.01 mm using a digimicrometer.
Calculate volume of tree swallow eggs using the following equation (Hoyt, 1979). Volume = LengthWidth2 × 0.51
Record measurements on the Tree Swallow Egg Field Specimen Collection/ Processing form (Table 3).
Replace egg into the original labeled collection resealable plastic bag, wrap in bubble wrap, place in a glass jar (provided by contract analytical laboratory), seal, and temporarily store back into a cooler with wet ice. Page 5 of 11
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