BirdsSurdeSonora Osvel 10 03

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Birds of the Coastal Wetlands of Southern Sonora: Status and Conservation Osvel Hinojosa Huerta


The Importance of Southern Sonora for Birds Over 260 species Critical wintering and stopover site in the Pacific Flyway Waterfowl (120,000; 25 species) Shorebirds (90,000; 28 species)


The Importance of Southern Sonora for Birds Stopover site for Neotropical migratory landbirds


The Importance of Southern Sonora for Birds Breeding waterbirds Marshbirds Colonial waterbirds Protected Species 19 species Least Tern Clapper Rail Piping Plover Brant Least Grebe


The Importance of Southern Sonora for Birds 7 AICAs (Important Bird Areas) Important site for North American Wetlands Conservation Council Priority Site for Conservation of Biodiversity in the Gulf of California


Threats to Birds in Southern Sonora Habitat loss and degradation Mangrove areas Freshwater and brackish marshes Riparian areas Disturbance of breeding grounds Pollution


Threats to Birds in Southern Sonora Reduced avian productivity and survivorship Population declines Local extirpations Loss of biodiversity


Birds as Indicators of Environmental Health


Marshbirds of Southern Sonora Breed in areas with emergent vegetation or mangroves Strongest dependence upon wetland ecosystems Sharp population declines in North America: habitat loss More drastic in the Sonoran Desert Ecoregion


Marshbirds of Southern Sonora 5 species Ardeidae American Bittern - Botaurus lentiginosus Least Bittern - Ixobrychus exilis


Rallidae Clapper Rail - Rallus longirostris Virginia Rail - Rallus limicola Sora - Porzana carolina Marshbirds of Southern Sonora


Marshbirds of Southern Sonora Determine the status of marshbirds in SS and set a baseline for a long-term monitoring program Part of a regional effort to determine the relative abundance and distribution of marshbirds in Northwestern Mexico Linked to a continental effort to estimate population trends of marshbirds in NA (USGS; USFWS)


Protocol Standardized Protocol for Monitoring Marshbirds in North America (Conway 2002) Based on call-response surveys: 30 s of vocalizations of each species, followed by 30 s of silence Counts during breeding season, when vocalization rate increases (May-June)


Protocol Variable distance point counts Survey stations 200 m apart Grouped in transects (5 stations)


Counting the number of individuals of each species responding to the tapes, along with distance estimation Habitat measurements at each station: cover classes, veg height, salinity, and water depth Support with GIS and satellite images for change analysis and density estimates Protocol


Surveyed Wetlands Sonora Delta del Río Colorado Estero Santa Rosa, Estero del Soldado, Sur de Sonora Baja California Punta Banda, Río San Telmo, Bahía San Quintín, El Rosario, Laguna Guerrero Negro Baja California Sur Laguna Ojo de Liebre, Laguna San Ignacio, Bahía Magdalena, Ensenada La Paz, San José del Cabo Sinaloa Ensenada Pabellones y Bahía Santa María


Surveyed Wetlands in Southern Sonora Estero Santa Cruz Punta Santa Rosa El Soldado Miramar Tobari System Yavaros Huatabampo Agiabampo


Total Survey Effort


Preliminary Results 124 individuals from 4 species Clapper Rails are common in mangrove areas Distribution is patchy; some mangrove areas without CLRAs Other marshbirds are very scarce


Marshbird Abundance


Marshbird Density


Preliminary Results


Next Steps… Data analysis and reporting Develop and implement monitoring plan Regional Conservation Plan for Marshbirds Include other guilds and species to assess the status of the wetlands of Southern Sonora


Next Steps… Outreach and Environmental Education Support decision making and management Conservation!

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