Shorebird Monitoring Has Begun

The unmistakable American Oystercatcher (Haematopus palliates)

The unmistakable American Oystercatcher (Haematopus palliates)

Yesterday we did our second round of a shorebird census sponsored by the Connecticut Alliance of Audubon Societies for the US Fish and Wildlife Service.  What could be better on a beautiful spring day  than spending the morning birding Milford Point, one of the premier shoreline spots in Connecticut?  The point of the census is to determine the number of shorebirds (sandpipers, plovers, stilts, curlews, godwits, etc.) that visit our shores.  This will monitor population trends and identify important stopover and nesting areas for these birds.  A separate program we are involved in concerns protecting the nesting locations of those shorebirds that nest here such as the Piping Plover and Least Tern (see post from last summer on this) which are threatened species in Connecticut and the Roseate Tern which is endangered.

We walked the sandbars and beach and surveyed the marsh, finding 34 species in all, six of which were targets of our survey: American Oystercatcher, Piping Plover, Dunlin, Greater Yellowlegs, Lesser Yellowlegs and Killdeer.  The Ospreys were repairing their nest, Plovers and Oystercatchers were linking up with partners for the nesting season.  Soon exclosures will go up around the plover nests and lines will be strung to keep people off the nesting areas for the terns and other shorebirds.  If you see any of these areas this summer, please respect them and give these elegant birds a chance to raise their young successfully.

Pairing up and hoping for a successful nesting this summer

Pairing up and hoping for a successful nesting this summer

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: