Southern Sierra Research Station

...conserving biological diversity through research

Assessment of Habitat Restoration for Riparian Songbirds using Standardized MAPS Banding Data

In 2016 SSRS, created 24 acres of new riparian habitat and enhanced 49 acres of existing mature riparian Yellow-billed Cuckoo and Willow Flycatcher habitat on Audubon's Kern River Preserve. During 2017, SSRS established 3 MAPS (Monitoring Avian Productivity and Survival) stations in our enhancement sites and captured over 1300 adult and juvenile songbirds including several state recognized species of greatest conservation need (SGCN).

MAPS is a great way to evaluate indicators of restoration and conservation success because captured songbirds can be aged to juvenile or adult, and juvenile recruitment is correlated with species declines. MAPS stations also allow determining adult and juvenile within- and between- season survivorship via recaptures. With additional years of data, it will be possible to assess long-term changes in habitat quality using breeding productivity and survivorship rates for SGCN in our enhancements and species trends range-wide.

Our 2017 MAPS stations engaged the local community with visits from local school groups, local newspapers, professional banders, and other interested community members. One of our stations operates right outside of the visitors center at Audubon KRP headquarters, thus, we have a great opportunity to educate the public about songbird conservation.

But... SSRS needs funding for internships for 3 technicians to help run MAPS stations this spring. Please consider giving a donation to help us fund our bird banding research.