Distribution and abundance of nesting ospreys in the United States



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Nesting Ospreys (Pandion haliaetus) in the contiguous United States now number about 8,000 pairs. Five regional populations exist (in order of abundance): Atlantic Coast, Florida and Gulf Coast, Pacific Northwest, Western Interior, and Great Lakes. Pesticides severely impacted the populations in the northern portion of the Atlantic Coast (Boston to Cape May) and the Great Lakes, but both are now recovering. During recent years in the west, especially in the Western Interior, reservoirs have been responsible for a range expansion and, perhaps, a population increase. However, a strong fidelity to ancestral breeding areas (short dispersal distance) has slowed the range expansion. Unique introductions to distant reservoirs (from breeding populations) are now being made and followed with intense interest. Ospreys adapted to man, his structures, and many of his habitat changes, but proved sensitive to his chemical pollutants. These characteristics make the Osprey an excellent environmental indicator species.

Additional publication details

Publication type Book chapter
Publication Subtype Book Chapter
Title Distribution and abundance of nesting ospreys in the United States
Year Published 1983
Language English
Publisher Harpell Press
Publisher location Ste. Anne de Bellevue, Quebec
Contributing office(s) Patuxent Wildlife Research Center
Description x, 325
Larger Work Type Book
Larger Work Subtype Other Government Series
Larger Work Title Biology and Management of Bald Eagles and Ospreys
First page 175
Last page 186