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Mexico Archives — Page 2 of 3 — BirdConservancy.org

Study: Expansion of Croplands in Chihuahua, Mexico, Threatens Declining Grassland Birds

By | Partners, Science | No Comments

The Chihuahuan Desert grasslands of northern Mexico and the southwestern United States are the principal wintering grounds for 90% of grassland bird species breeding in the western Great Plains of North America. Species such as Baird’s Sparrows, Chestnut-collared Longspurs and Sprague’s Pipits, which rely on this region during the winter, have declined by upwards of 80% since the 1960s. Results from Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory and cooperators’ research, published in February in the journal Biological Conservation, shed light as to why these birds are declining and emphasize that unless immediate action is taken, forecasts are dire.

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Sites Added to Grassland Bird Winter Survival Study

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Grassland birds are declining faster than any other group of North American birds. The key to reversing these declines may lie on their wintering grounds in northern Mexico. Writing from Chihuahua, biologist Erin Strasser provides a preview of RMBO’s second season studying the overwintering ecology of Baird’s and Grasshopper Sparrows in the Mexican grasslands.

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Saving the Aplomado Falcon in the Grasslands of Chihuahua, Mexico

By | Partners, Science, Stewardship | No Comments

“Another nest has failed.” This is the recurring news that technicians monitoring Aplomado Falcons in Chihuahua, Mexico, have reported over the last 18 years. Private Lands Wildlife Biologists Roberto Rodríguez and Pedro Calderón report from Chihuahua on last season’s monitoring of this iconic, grassland species and efforts to conserve its dwindling habitat there.

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Experiences from the Field in West Mexico

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The pine-oak and cloud forests of West Mexico are critical habitat for endemic and migrant bird species. In March, RMBO wrapped up its first year of surveying birds in the region. Our technicians offer a report from Jalisco, Mexico, on their experiences surveying in this challenging, beautiful terrain, including a list of unique species detected.

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A Season of Success, Surprises and Insight into Baird’s and Grasshopper Sparrow Winter Survival

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Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory had a productive and successful first field season studying Baird’s and Grasshopper Sparrow overwintering survival and habitat use in the Chihuahuan Desert grasslands of northern Mexico. From early November to early March, RMBO gathered a massive amount of novel and informative data on these two species at Reserva Ecológica El Uno near Janos, Chihuahua, Mexico.

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Fieldwork in Chihuahua, Mexico: Identifying Threats to Overwintering Grassland Birds

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A herd of bison grazes the golden-hued grasslands, Ferruginous Hawks patrol the skies for jackrabbits, and packs of coyotes yip back and forth across the prairie dog colonies. Thus was our welcoming as we arrived at Reserva Ecológica El Uno near Janos, Chihuahua, Mexico on the afternoon of Nov. 11. Our mission: Catch and place radio transmitters on Baird’s and Grasshopper Sparrows this winter to track them and study their habitat use and overwinter survival.

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Conservation Plan Addresses Decline of Grassland Birds

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Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory has released the first-ever conservation plan for grassland bird species that winter in the Chihuahuan Desert, with support from the Rio Grande Joint Venture and American Bird Conservancy. The plan provides a wide range of science-based information to guide everyone from on-the-ground land managers to program- and policy-level decision-makers in maintaining and improving habitat for grassland bird species of high conservation concern.

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