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Breeding biology of the Long-billed Curlew

Long-billed CurlewIn 2008 I began working on a collaborative project with the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service to further understand the breeding biology of Long-billed Curlews in Nebraska.  The Long-billed Curlew is a large, prairie-nesting shorebird of the dry grasslands and rangelands of western North America.  Cory Gregory, a M.S. student in my lab, is trying to learn more about curlews by studying several aspects of their breeding biology.  Specifically, his research is conducted at Crescent Lake National Wildlife Refuge in the panhandle of western Nebraska and focuses on nest and chick survival as well as nesting and brood-rearing habitat associations.  First, he hopes to provide a statewide estimate of the number of breeding curlews in Nebraska by using roadside surveys and distance sampling.  Secondly, he hopes to estimate chick survival by using radio-telemetry to track the precocial young.  Additionally, he hopes to learn more about their nesting habitat associations and also habitat associations of curlew chicks.  Although Long-billed Curlews were previously considered much more widespread, their population has declined precipitously over the last 150 years due to the changes in land management and habitat degradation.  Cory hopes to provide key data to aid in the conservation of curlews breeding in Nebraska.

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Funding Organization: Nebraska Game and Parks Commission  |  United States Fish & Wildlife Service