North American shorebirds are declining faster than we ever imagined

By Stephen Brown, Vice President of Science, Manomet Linked Paper: Accelerating declines of North America’s shorebirds signal the need for urgent conservation action by Paul A. Smith, Adam C. Smith, Brad Andres, Charles M. Francis, Brian Harrington, Christian Friis, R.I. Guy Morrison, Julie Paquet, Bradford Winn, and Stephen Brown, Ornithological Applications. Nearly all shorebird species …

Probability of occurrence in harvest regions is greatest for eastern-breeding Lesser Yellowlegs

Linked paper: Eastern-breeding Lesser Yellowlegs are more likely than western-breeding birds to visit areas with high shorebird hunting during southward migration by Laura A. McDuffie, Katherine S. Christie, Autumn-Lynn Harrison, Audrey R. Taylor, Brad A. Andres, Benoit Laliberté, James A. Johnson. Ornithological Applications. By Laura McDuffie Typically, when people think of shorebirds, they envision plump, …

Resighting Errors Are Easy to Make and Hard to Measure

Color bands, leg flags, and other field-readable marks are a core component of the ornithologist’s toolkit. Mark-resight studies have led to invaluable insights into the demographics, movements, territoriality, and migration patterns of birds. But clear, confident IDs can be hard to obtain in the field. Colors are difficult to distinguish in low light or when worn, alphanumeric codes are easily mis-remembered or mis-recorded, and was it blue on the left, red on the right, or the other way around?

How to Hide a Godwit

Marbled Godwits are common and conspicuous North American shorebirds. On its prairie breeding grounds, the godwit’s raucous call and proud flight display alerts all to its presence, and the species is equally obvious on its temperate nonbreeding grounds along both the Atlantic and Pacific coasts due to its gregarious nature and telltale alarm call. So how did such a charismatic species go largely undetected in Alaska until the 1980s?