Inferences on the Status of Raptors
August 2017 - January 2018
- Colorado Parks and Wildlife
Raptors are key components of many ecosystems and numerous raptors in Colorado are species of conservation concern. Monitoring raptor populations is challenging due to their ecology and life history, and large-scale data sets of breeding raptor populations are rare and frequently incomplete. Scientists and volunteers throughout Colorado have been gathering data on raptor locations and abundance for decades using various survey techniques, including point counts, roost surveys, and nest surveys and monitoring. This project will investigate the potential of these combined data sources for assessing raptor populations at regional or statewide scales, and evaluate field protocols used to provide records for this database. The project is a collaboration between the USGS-COCFWRU and Colorado Parks and Wildlife avian researchers and raptor biologists. A model of eagle nest survival as a function of anthropogenic and landscape factors, as well as raptor species distribution, will be developed. In addition, recommendations for a design of nest survival and raptor distribution monitoring will inform future raptor assessment in Colorado.