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Robert E. Gill Jr.

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A 6-year study of shorebird use of intertidal habitats of the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta revealed this area to be one of the premiere sites for shorebirds throughout the Holarctic and worthy of designation as a Hemispheric Shorebird Reserve in the Western Hemisphere Shorebird Reserve Network. The study area, which covered 10% (300 km2) of the delta's intertidal flats, regularly hosted 17 species of shorebirds between late April and mid-October. The greatest use was during the postbreeding period (late June-October), when Dunlins (Calidris alpina), Western Sandpipers (C. mauri), and Rock Sandpipers (C. ptilocnemis), each with large local nesting populations, accounted for 95% of the shorebirds recorded. Peak counts during...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: The Condor
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Breeding ecology studies of boreal waders have been relatively scarce in North America. This paucity is due in part to boreal habitats being difficult to access, and boreal waders being widely dispersed and thus difficult to monitor. Between 2008 and 2014 we studied the nesting ecology of Whimbrels Numenius phaeopus hudsonicus in interior Alaska, a region characterized by an active wildfire regime. Our objectives were to (1) describe the nesting ecology of Whimbrels in tundra patches within the boreal forest, (2) assess the influence of habitat features at multiple scales on nest-site selection, and (3) characterize factors affecting nest survival. Whimbrels nested in the largest patches and exhibited a consistently...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Wader Study
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Conservation of long-distance migratory shorebirds is complex because these species use habitats spread across continents and hemispheres, making identification of critical habitats and potential bottlenecks in the annual cycle especially difficult. The population of Black-tailed Godwits that breeds in Western Europe, Limosa limosa limosa, has declined precipitously over the past few decades. Despite significant efforts to identify the root causes of this decline, much remains unclear. To better understand the migratory timing, use of stopover and nonbreeding sites, and the potential impact of breeding success on these parameters, we attached 15 Argos satellite transmitters and 10 geolocation tracking devices to...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Ardea
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Rock Sandpipers Calidris ptilocnemis have the most northerly non-breeding distribution of any shorebird in the Pacific Basin (upper Cook Inlet, Alaska; 61°N, 151°W). In terms of freezing temperatures, persistent winds and pervasive ice, this site is the harshest used by shorebirds during winter. We integrated physiological, metabolic, behavioural and environmental aspects of the non-breeding ecology of Rock Sandpipers at the northern extent of their range to determine the relative importance of these factors in facilitating their unique non-breeding ecology. Not surprisingly, estimated daily energetic demands were greatest during January, the coldest period of winter. These estimates were greatest for foraging birds,...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Ibis
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