CMMN Daily Estimated Totals: Beaverhill Bird Observatory

Beaverhill Bird Observatory

Project name: Canadian Migration Monitoring Network

Goals : To generate counts of migrating birds for use in long-term population monitoring, especially landbird species not monitored by current breeding or winter surveys; To carry out cooperative research projects on the ecology of migrating birds.Beaverhill Bird Observatory’s objectives are to conduct research to better understand bird ecology, promote conservation of birds and their habitats, and encourage the appreciation of the natural world through public engagement. Beaverhill Bird Observatory also monitors fall movements of Northern Saw-whet and Boreal Owl and runs three MAPS stations and Tree Swallow boxes that have been monitored since the 90's

Dataset summary : This dataset contains daily estimated totals (DET) from the Beaverhill Bird Observatory. DET is a standard protocol used by Canadian Migration Monitoring Network stations to estimate the total number of individuals of each species occurring at a site during migration.

Status : Active

Year started : 1990

Years (comments) : Beaverhill Bird Observatory was launched in 1984, was incorporated in 1988 and began standardized migrationing monitoring in 1990.

Season(s) and frequency : Spring Monitoring runs from May 1st to June 10th. Fall songbird monitoring runs August 1st to October 10 and fall owl monitoring runs September 9th to November 14th.

Geographic area covered : Study area is approximately 12hectares in central Alberta, near Edmonton.

Type(s) of habitat : Count area consists of Woodland, Subland, Gassland and Open wetlands (marsh, bogs, etc.).

Primary species covered : Primary focus is landbirds (104 priority species) but BBO aslso monitors Northern Saw-whet owl and Boreal Owl.

Sampling Design : Standardized captures and observations used to derive daily estimated total throughout migration window.

Field methods : Combination of standardized daily captures, census, visible migration counts and other observations resulting in a daily estimated total for each species. Observation period is 6 hours in length with a 0.5hour census. BBO runs 12 mistnets 12m in length.

Data format : Data-entry program produces .dbf or .xls files. Archival copy of data for most stations is maintained at BSC.

Sample size : 16 full member station operating 21 migration stations. Several pilot stations.

Results : Most stations produce some form of annual report for members.

Trends and time series availability : Time series varied (1960-present for LPBO). Trend graphs updated annually for all stations with at least 5 years of data. Available on BSC web site

Publications : Hussell, DJT and CJ Ralph. 1998. Recommended methods for monitoring bird populations by counting and capture of migrants. (available on BSC website) Dunn, EH and DJT Hussell. 1995. Using migration counts to monitor landbird populations: review and evaluation of current status. Pp 43-58 in D.M. Power (ed.), Current Ornithology vol 12. Plenum Press, NY.

Funding sources : Varied.

Applications for the data : Trend information feeds into integrated population approach and is also used for planning and environmental assessment purposes.

Users of the information : BSC, research biologists