The proper design of a monitoring effort depends primarily on the objectives desired, constrained by the resources available to conduct the work. Typically, managers have numerous objectives, such as determining abundance of the species, detecting changes in population size, evaluating responses to management activities, and assessing habitat associations. A design that is optimal for one objective will likely not be optimal for others. Careful consideration of the importance of the competing objectives may lead to a design that adequately addresses the priority concerns, although it may not be optimal for any individual objective. Poor design or inadequate sample sizes may result in such weak conclusions that the effort is wasted. Statistical expertise can be used at several stages, such as estimating power of certain hypothesis tests, but is perhaps most useful in fundamental considerations of describing objectives and designing sampling plans.
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Federal Government Series
Statistical considerations in monitoring birds over large areas