Event Title

Using citizen-science data to identify local hotspots of seabird occurrence

Presentation Abstract

Abstract

Seabirds have been identified and used as indicators of ecosystem processes such as climate change and human activity in nearshore ecosystems around the globe. Temporal and spatial trends have been documented at large spatial scales, but few studies have examined more localized patterns of spatiotemporal variation, by species or functional group. In this paper, we apply spatial occupancy models to assess the spatial patchiness and inter-annual trends of 18 seabird species in the Puget Sound region (Washington State, USA). Our dataset, the Puget Sound Seabird Survey of the Seattle Audubon Society, is unique in that it represents a seven-year study, collected with a focus on winter months (October–April). Despite historic declines of seabirds in the region over the last 50 years, results from our study are optimistic, suggesting increases in probabilities of occurrence for 14 of the 18 species included. We found support for declines in occurrence for white-winged scoters, brants, and two species of grebes. The decline of Western grebes in particular is troubling, but in agreement with other recent studies that have shown support for a range shift south in recent years, to the southern end of California Current.

Session Title

General species and food webs

Conference Track

Species and Food Webs

Conference Name

Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference (2016 : Vancouver, B.C.)

Document Type

Event

Location

2016SSEC

Type of Presentation

Poster

Contributing Repository

Digital content made available by University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University.

Comments

The following two links will provide more information about the scientific paper and the data collection project.

Link to entire PeerJ paper:

https://peerj.com/articles/704/

Link to Seattle Audubon Society's Puget Sound Seabird Survey web page:

http://www.seattleaudubon.org/sas/WhatWeDo/Science/CitizenScience/PugetSoundSeabirdSurvey.aspx

Rights

This resource is displayed for educational purposes only and may be subject to U.S. and international copyright laws. For more information about rights or obtaining copies of this resource, please contact University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University, Bellingham, WA 98225-9103, USA (360-650-7534; heritage.resources@wwu.edu) and refer to the collection name and identifier. Any materials cited must be attributed to the Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference Records, University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University.

Type

Text

Language

English

Format

application/pdf

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Using citizen-science data to identify local hotspots of seabird occurrence

2016SSEC

Abstract

Seabirds have been identified and used as indicators of ecosystem processes such as climate change and human activity in nearshore ecosystems around the globe. Temporal and spatial trends have been documented at large spatial scales, but few studies have examined more localized patterns of spatiotemporal variation, by species or functional group. In this paper, we apply spatial occupancy models to assess the spatial patchiness and inter-annual trends of 18 seabird species in the Puget Sound region (Washington State, USA). Our dataset, the Puget Sound Seabird Survey of the Seattle Audubon Society, is unique in that it represents a seven-year study, collected with a focus on winter months (October–April). Despite historic declines of seabirds in the region over the last 50 years, results from our study are optimistic, suggesting increases in probabilities of occurrence for 14 of the 18 species included. We found support for declines in occurrence for white-winged scoters, brants, and two species of grebes. The decline of Western grebes in particular is troubling, but in agreement with other recent studies that have shown support for a range shift south in recent years, to the southern end of California Current.