Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units Program: South Carolina
Education, Research and Technical Assistance for Managing Our Natural Resources

South Carolina Project

Analysis of bird population count data

August 2016 - December 2018


Participating Agencies


Sea ducks are understudied relative to other species of waterfowl, especially in the southern portion of the US Atlantic Coast. Climate change and human activity (e.g., wind energy development) could impact their wintering sites causing negative carry-over effects through the rest of their life cycle. Our goal was to better describe wintering sites, movement, and habitat use of black scoters along the southern US Atlantic Coast using satellite telemetry and aerial survey data. This project was a collaboration between USFWS, Environment Canada, and USGS. The output from this study could be used to better inform survey methods for black scoters or to decrease conflict with wind energy development in the area.

Research Publications Publication Date
Plumpton, H.M., S.G. Gilliland, and B.E. Ross. 2020. Geographic differences in the winter movements of the Atlantic population of Black Scoters. Submitted to Avian Conservation and Ecology. August 2020
Presentations Presentation Date
Plumpton, H. M., E. D. Silverman, B. E. Ross. 2017. Annual Factors Influencing the Wintering Distribution of Black Scoters in the South Atlantic. The Wildlife Society Annual Meeting. Albuquerque, New Mexico. September 2017
Plumpton, H.M., E. Silverman, B.E. Ross. 2017. Annual factors affecting the distribution for wintering Black Scoters. 6th International Sea Duck Conference February 2017