Over 15 years ago, the North American Waterbird Conservation Plan examined the status of colonial waterbirds and developed strategies for addressing concerns and knowledge gaps to manage for sustainable populations of these species. One critical element of conserving and managing waterbirds is a monitoring program that provides current information on the status of waterbird populations that can be used to track population trends and evaluate the effectiveness of management actions.
Coordination across state and provincial boundaries is needed to ensure effective monitoring for planning, management, or policy decisions. Such coordination includes implementation of comparable monitoring techniques and a shared, managed data resource that enables assessments at multiple scales. Efforts are currently underway to develop a coordinated colonial waterbird survey effort across coastal states and provinces in the Atlantic Flyway, with a goal of eventual expansion to Pacific and Gulf of Mexico coastal states to better address the conservation needs of species that breed on both coasts. This effort is coordinated by the USFWS Northeast Region Migratory Birds Program, the USGS Maine Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, and the Seabird Colonies and Adjacent Waters Working Group.
USFWS Northeast Region Migratory Birds Program
USGS Maine Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit
USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center
Virginia Department of Game & Inland Fisheries
Seabird Colonies and Adjacent Waters Working Group (accessible in the future)