Ken Rosenberg, Cornell Lab of Ornithology
Just as migration experts from 6 countries are gathering this week for a symposium at the PIF VI conference in San José, Costa Rica, a major review of migration stopover and bottlenecks in the Neotropics was published this week in the journal Bird Conservation International. The review article, authored by Nick Bayly, Ken Rosenberg, Wendy Easton, Camila Gómez, Jay Carlisle, Dave Ewert, Anna Drake, and Laurie Goodrich, was an outgrowth of a similar symposium held at the PIF V meeting in Snowbird, Utah. As billions of migratory birds traverse the hemisphere each year, the bulk of migration for many species occurs south of the U.S. and Canada—yet we know surprisingly little about the strategies, routes, and behaviors of migrants within the Neotropics.
The scant research that exists, mostly from Northern Colombia, highlights the importance of key stopover sites to the success of overall migration, and reveals that many songbirds use strategies similar to shorebirds, making long direct flights and long stopovers at relatively few high-quality sites along the way. Discovering these “Delaware Bays” for songbirds in Central and northern South America remains a high priority for full life-cycle conservation of migratory birds, according to the review. Some progress is being made towards filling important knowledge gaps, and a summary of these results will be presented at this week’s symposium at PIF VI. To download a free copy of the review article, please visit http://goo.gl/juuQLN