I dont usually chime in on this listserve (in fact I would love to be taken off
- but have not figured out how), but couldnt resist here.
Jack stressed that much more can be learned from transects. However, the type of
information gleaned from count-based studies does not provide the critical
information on productivity and/or survivorship. While productivity information
can be gained through nest monitoring, estimates of adult survival can only be
achieved through marking individual birds.
This is critical information to determine what is driving population changes.
Without a greater understanding of population dynamics and this type of
demographic information we havnt a chance at turning around the grim patterns of
Remember... for the good of our bird life.
Having said that, banding for the sake of handling birds (ie with no clear
research or monitoring objective), or running mist-nets as a venue to expand a
perverse listing tendency (ie. trying to band the most birds, or numbers of
species, etc) is certainly abusive - with or without incidental mortality.
PRBO Conservation Science
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Jack Walters wrote:
> Hi birders, Believe me, I know there are times and places that we do need
> bird banding, but only for good and needed causes, not thousands of banders
> out there banding millions of birds the year round in Canada and the United
> States. Much more can be learned by using transects and a couple of
> observers. I know of one study of where there were only two serveyors in two
> months worked three hours, five days a week and had over 5000 entrys, over
> large areas and not one bird kill.
> It would be nice if we had some places in Nevada that were free from bird
> banders. It seems that they are bent on putting shackles on all of our birds
> in Nevada. And, they do it right through the nesting season, even hunters
> know better than to bother birds when they are nesting. Thirty minutes with
> a parent away from a nest means death to the nestlings in the sun, and not
> to mention nest preditors which are many.
> I have never heard of banders recording deaths that they cause. Maybe
> someone should do a study on what bird banding does to bird populations. Now
> that would productive to knowledge and the preservation of birds.
> The above statement probably will P-off a lot of educators, government
> employees and self pleasing banders," But it needs to be said."
> Furthermore, new laws should be implimented on the state and federal levels.
> And I might add that we do have laws that need to be enforced. It is not
> lawful to kill migrating birds by any means and I don't know of any hunting
> season on our local song birds.
> I will have to check our NEVADA STATUTES and REVISED STATUTES and maybe do
> some lobbying at the legeslature on this matter.
> I am open for discussion on this subject....
> Remember... for the good of our bird life.
> Jack Walters
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Point Reyes Bird Observatory
415-868-0655 ext. 385
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