Last Mountain 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.
Dataset summary : This dataset contains daily estimated totals (DET) from the Last Mountain 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 : 1989
Years (comments) : CMMN was launched in 1998 as an ongoing monitoring program. The first migration monitoring station in North America was LPBO, started in 1960. Last Mountain Bird Observatory was established in 1989 and standardized migration monitoring began in 1992.
Season(s) and frequency : Spring monitoring runs from May 9th to May 31st. Fall monitoring runs from August 3rd to October 7th.
Geographic area covered : Located near Imperial, Saskatchewan (51.35084, -105.21725). The count area is approximately 20 hectares.
Type(s) of habitat : The count area consists of Woodland, Shrubland, Grassland, Open wetlands (marsh, bogs, etc.), Standing water (pond, lake), Beach or dunes and Human sites (agriculture, maintained lawns, etc.).
Primary species covered : Primary focus is landbirds (104 priority species) but some stations also monitor waterbirds, raptors.
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. The count period id 6 hours with a 1 hour census period. The station runs 13 mist nets.
Data format : Data-entry program produces .dbf 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