Breeding birds associated with seasonal pools in the northeastern United States

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Seasonal pools in the northeastern United States provide habitat for amphibians and invertebrates, but little is known about their importance as habitat for birds. We examined avian community composition at seasonal pools in Rhode Island to test the hypothesis that seasonal pools would support a greater abundance and diversity of birds than nearby upland sites. From mid-May to June 2008, we conducted point counts at 33 paired sets of seasonal pools and upland sites that were 150 m apart. Bird abundance and diversity was significantly higher at seasonal pools than upland sites, whereas community composition as measured by evenness was similar. We also found that the mean abundance of birds was significantly greater at urban pools than rural pools. Our results suggest that birds preferentially use seasonal pools, particularly in more urban settings, adding to the body of evidence that supports the protection and restoration of small isolated wetlands in urban landscapes. © 2009 Association of Field Ornithologists. No claim to original U.S. government works.

Publication Title, e.g., Journal

Journal of Field Ornithology