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San Francisco Bay Fund Inventory of Projects

San Francisco Bay Fund Inventory of Projects

Comprehensive Survey of Shorebirds Using San Francisco Bay

Organization: PRBO Conservation Science
2007 Grant Recipient - All Bay Area Counties

The results from comprehensive surveys of wintering shorebirds in San Francisco Bay, conducted in November from 2006 through 2008, indicated stable or increasing populations for most species compared to equivalent surveys conducted from 1990 through 1992. The number of individuals of 8 of 22 species increased throughout the Bay between the two time periods based on our criteria for change but apart from Willet and Least Sandpiper, those species that increased were the relatively less abundant ones (< 4000 individuals).

The number of shorebirds observed in specific regions of the Bay changed considerably with the Central Bay (from the San Mateo Bridge north to Point San Pedro and Point San Pablo) exhibiting the most change; nine species increased, five decreased and the total number of shorebirds decreased.

In the North Bay, seven species decreased and in the South Bay two species increased and two decreased. Although 19 of 22 species exhibited change in at least one region of the Bay, only the Least Sandpiper increased in all regions.

Shorebird populations were largely stable in this analysis, which suggests that overall San Francisco Bay has remained an important site for wintering shorebirds over the last 20 years. Whether this Bay-wide stability reflects stability in shorebird populations across a larger spatial extent is not known.

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Project Photos

Photo by M. Dettling.

Map of San Francisco Bay showing 3 Bay regions and A-J sub-regions surveyed for shorebirds.

Distribution of 224 sampling locations used in simulations to assess sampling frameworks for wintering shorebirds in the San Francisco Bay.

The bird species is American Avocet. Photo by M. Dettling.

Photo by M. Dettling.

Last modified: 7/16/2012 11:34 AM by S. Haren

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