Middlebury Conservation Biology Students Luke Elder and Max Hoffman assisted with habitat assessment for some surveys

Saltmarsh Bird Surveys

Saltmarsh Sparrow (Ammodramus caudacutus ) Nests in saltmarsh hay at the edge of the high tide range

 

We recently finished the last round of Saltmarsh bird surveys at 14 randomly selected marshes on Martha’s Vineyard and Chappaquiddick.  We conducted 3 surveys during the breeding season at each site in 2011 and 2012 to contribute data to an Atlantic Coast effort (http://www.tidalmarshbirds.org/)

 

With sea levels rising, saltmarsh habitat is vulnerable in many areas along the Atlantic Coast.  These surveys are providing baseline data about the abundance and distribution of several bird species that rely on saltmarshes for nesting habitat.  I was happy to see nesting saltmarsh sparrows at every site we surveyed this year!

Middlebury College Conservation Biology Students Luke Elder and Max Hoffman assist with habitat assessment at a survey site on Chappaquiddick

River otter (Lontra canadensis) trail from salt pond to uplands