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The high-elevation population of Mountain Plovers in Colorado

The Condor

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Abstract

We surveyed a discrete population of Mountain Plovers (Charadrius montanus) in South Park, Park County, Colorado, to determine the size and relative contribution of this geographically isolated area to the global population of plovers. First, we mapped potential plover habitat within South Park based on landform and vegetation descriptors. Second, we identified occupied habitat using observations from a systematic inventory of potential habitat from 1995a??1999 and from a study of breeding biology from 2000a??2002. Third, we estimated breeding densities within a framework designed specifically for distance sampling. We mapped 82 750 ha of potential habitat. We recorded 2516 plover locations from which we estimated 29 176 ha of occupied habitat. We estimated densities for 14 960 ha of potential habitat. Average plover density from 2000a??2002 was 7.9 +/- 0.9 (SE) breeding adults km -2, a high value compared with other sites. We calculated a population of 1187 +/- 140 (SE) plovers in the distance sampling area. Assuming density in our sampling area was similar for all documented occupied habitat, we estimated the population of plovers in South Park at 2310 adults. We conclude that South Park represents a contemporarily large concentration of breeding Mountain Plovers.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
The high-elevation population of Mountain Plovers in Colorado
Series title:
The Condor
Volume
105
Issue:
4
Year Published:
2003
Language:
English
Contributing office(s):
Fort Collins Science Center
Description:
p. 654-662
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
The Condor
First page:
654
Last page:
662
Number of Pages:
9