Atlantic Nocturnal Owls Survey
New Brunswick Department of Natural Resources
Prince Edward Island Department of Natural Resources
Project name: Atlantic Canada Nocturnal Owl Survey
Goals : The goals of this survey are to determine population trends of owls (especially Barred Owls) in Atlantic Canada, to gather location information on rare or little-known owl species (especially Boreal and Long-eared Owls), and to involve volunteer birders from across the region in active wildlife monitoring.
Dataset summary : The dataset consists of detections of noturnal owls along survey routes with stops established at 2km intervals along roadside.
Status : Active
Year started : 2001
Season(s) and frequency : any evening between April 1 and May 15
Frequency : Annually
Geographic area covered : Maritime provinces of Canada
Type(s) of habitat : Mostly forest and forest-agricultural mix
Primary species covered : Focal species is Barred Owl, also of interest are Northern Saw-whet, Great-Horned, Boreal and Long-eared Owls.
Sampling Design : Randomly selected routes
Field methods : Similar to other roadside surveys using tape playback. Two volunteers drive pre-determined route, stopping at fixed intervals (2 km apart in NB and PE, 1.6 km apart in NS) along roadside. At each stop, 2 minutes of silent listenting is followed by playbacks consisting of pre-recorded owl
Data format : MS Access database
Sample size : 104 routes in 2001
Results : Annual reports written and posted on BSC website (http://www.bsc-eoc.org/regional/nbowls.html)
Publications : Whittam, B. 2001a. New Brunswick Nocturnal Owl Survey 2001 Annual Report. Birds Canada, Atlantic Region, Sackville, New Brunswick. 24 pp. Whittam, B. 2001b. Prince Edward Island Nocturnal Owl Survey 2001 Annual Report. Birds Canada, Atlant
Funding sources : BSC, NB Environmental Trust Fund and NB Wildlife Trust Fund; NB Department of Natural Resources
Applications for the data : Counts used for statistical analysis of population trends, location of rare species, and habitat associations
Users of the information : BSC, Departments of Natural Resources, Parks Canada and other conservation organizations, raptor biologists