Great Lakes Piping Plover Recovery Effort

A partnership to study and conserve this migratory shorebird's endangered population between UMN, USFWS, USGS, NPS, DNR, more & You!

Winter Observers

We rely heavily on others in the field to keep track and help protect piping plovers during the non-breeding season. People look for GLPIPL on the wintering grounds, which range from North Carolina to the Bahamas, and then report them back to us. There has been a core group over the years that consistently monitor the plovers however, anyone can help out. If you see a plover, note the color band combination and send us as much information (date, location, etc…) as you can. Then you too will be part of the greater GLPIPL recovery effort too!

Winter sightings of banded piping plovers should be submitted to plover@umn.edu

*The observers listed below are in no particular order.


Cecy Alvarez & Juan Flores of Green Jay Mayan Birding

Cecy Alvarez & Juan Flores of Green Jay Mayan Birding

Name(s): Cecilia Alvarez & Juan Flores

Partner organization/or citizen scientist: Green Jay Mayan Birding

Hometown/Area you regularly look for plovers: Cancún, México

How many years have you been reporting Great Lakes Piping Plover observations? 2 Years.

Why do you look for piping plovers on the wintering grounds? Including, why do you take the extra step to report that sighting to us? We are an organization dedicated to the conservation of birds in the Yucatan Peninsula. The area where the plovers and other birds arrive is very vulnerable. Is Important for us to monitoring and share what we saw , because to protect and preserve, the people need to know about the amazing journeys of this birds, where they were banded and what is the value of having them spending the winter in this Place.

If you could tell people one thing about GLPIPL (bird and/or recovery effort) what would it be: GLPIPL is doing an amazing job to preserve and conserve birds, for that reason it is important to work with you to provide information and support in this effort.

Isla Blanca, Cancun Q. Roo

Isla Blanca, Cancun Q. Roo

What do you do when you’re not out looking for banded birds?

-Conservation.

-Environmental education.

-Bird Monitoring .

-We promote the activity of bird watching in the city and the Mayan Communities .

– Photo Exhibitions .

– Conferences.

– Birding tourism.

– We collaborate in different programs with NABCI – CONABIO in Mexico and with the Cornell Lab in United States.

Anything else you’d like to share: We have a network of friends in different places for monitoring birds in the Yucatan Peninsula, the name is “MAYAN JAYS” , we talked about starting this year campaigns for the protection of birds such as least tern in this Summer and Piping Plovers in winter. We expect with this teamwork better results, hopefully we can work with you too.

Follow us on Facebook: Green Jay Mayan Birding or on: www.greenjay.com.mx

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Pat and Doris Leary

Pat and Doris Leary

Name(s):   Doris and Pat Leary

Partner organization/or citizen scientist:  citizen scientists

Hometown/Area you regularly look for plovers: SE Georgia, NE Florida and Nature Coast of Florida

How many years have you been reporting Great Lakes Piping Plover observations? Since 1999

Why do you look for piping plovers on the wintering grounds? Including, why do you take the extra step to report that sighting to us? To support research, document populations for land managers and oversight agencies, increase public and institutional awareness, focus more attention on the species and contribute to UMN’s on-going research, recovery and conservation efforts.

If you could tell people one thing about GLPIPL (bird and/or recovery effort) what would it be: This work is critical for the recovery of the regional population.

What do you do when you’re not out looking for banded birds? Surveying and monitoring other shorebird species, photographing and documenting invertebrate species in regional parks and state forest, presenting programs to Road Scholar tours and advocating for natural resource protection and conservation

Anything else you’d like to share: Shorebird and coastal conservation require deep commitment and considerable persistence in the face of endless perturbations and challenges.

Al Menk

Al Menk

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Name(s): Al Menk

Partner organization/or citizen scientist: citizen scientist

Hometown/Area you regularly look for plovers: Fort Myers, FL (Nov-Apr)

How many years have you been reporting Great Lakes Piping Plover observations? 13

Why do you look for piping plovers on the wintering grounds? Including, why do you take the extra step to report that sighting to us? Simply enjoy the hobby of birding and photography. Always interesting on knowing where the Piping Plover was banded and when. Feel the tracking of Piping Plovers and other endangered shorebirds will help their survival. I always try to use an image to verify my reporting. I also keep my own records for the banded Piping Plovers I see during the winter, recording the first and last date seen. I find it relaxing to walk the mud flats and sand beaches with a goal of looking to find banded birds in the early morning, plus its good exercise and I meet people with similar interests.

If you could tell people one thing about GLPIPL (bird and/or recovery effort) what would it be: There are many dedicated people from monitors, banders, administrators and volunteers performing tasks that help the Piping Plovers keep it’s species alive.

What do you do when you’re not out looking for banded birds? My other hobby is finding and photographing native orchids in their natural habitat. I’ve reached a goal of locating and photographing within Michigan all known native orchid species. What I thought would be a simple task, took 12 years to locate 58 species.

Anything else you’d like to share: Because of the wintering Piping Plovers, one beach that I regularly visit has banned dogs.

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A and a wild Florida Scrub Jay

Andrea Pico Estrada and a wild Florida Scrub Jay

Name(s): Andrea Pico Estrada

Partner organization/or citizen scientist: Citizen Scientist – Nature photographer

Hometown/Area you regularly look for plovers: St Joseph’s Sound, Pinellas County, including the barrier islands of Honeymoon Island, Three-Rooker Bar, and Anclote Key

How many years have you been reporting Great Lakes Piping Plover observations? approximately 7

Why do you look for piping plovers on the wintering grounds? Including, why do you take the extra step to report that sighting to us? I want to learn more about their long journey, I’m curious to know where else they might stop and at what altitude they fly. It’s very interesting to me as well as many of my Instagram followers who enjoy reading about these tiny birds and their long migration paths/flights.

If you could tell people one thing about GLPIPL (bird and/or recovery effort) what would it be: The numbers of many bird species are declining at an alarming rate, if this downward trend continues there won’t be any more of these amazing birds for future generations to enjoy. I am concerned that lack of public sentiment and policy will inadvertently add to the decline by lack of empathy.

What do you do when you’re not out looking for banded birds? I look for other birds, I maintain an Instagram daily journal from the State of Florida with an emphasis on birds. As of this writing, I have close to 22,000 followers who like to hear about what birds are in the State and what is significant about them – http://www.instagram.com/andreapicoestrada

Anything else you’d like to share: When I moved to the State of Florida seven years ago, I was immediately drawn to the bird activity. I took up nature photography and haven’t stayed home ever since. You can find me out in the field or on a boat looking for the next nature adventure in this beautiful state.

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Name(s): Mark B Bartosik

Partner organization/or citizen scientist: private research; have degree, used to work in the zoology research in the past

Hometown/Area you regularly look for plovers: Galveston and Brazoria Counties, Texas

How many years have you been reporting Great Lakes Piping Plover observations? several years; found 2 GLPIPLs only recently during last winter

Why do you look for piping plovers on the wintering grounds? Including, why do you take the extra step to report that sighting to us? I study LETE behavior (other birds as well) and biology for over decade; molt last several years; PIPLs were around when LETEs were arriving in spring and were arriving before LETEs were leaving. Not only these birds are ‘cute’ but also their behaviors are very interesting; same as their molts; both behavior and molt seem to be very little studied. Fact that so many are banded is an incredible help and allow to follow individual birds to collect very interesting data.

If you could tell people one thing about GLPIPL (bird and/or recovery effort) what would it be: It would be a horrible lost if we do not do our best to save this population.

What do you do when you’re not out looking for banded birds? Looking at thousands of feather photos on the computer 🙂

Anything else you’d like to share: Usually updated photo of all banded Piping Plovers I found in Texas can be see here: http://www.pbase.com/mbb/image/159726481/original And Least Terns here: http://www.pbase.com/mbb/image/159726251/original Those with red question mark are still not identified (as who and when banded these birds).

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Name(s): Lindsay Addison (and current and recent former techs Jen Carman, Tara McIver, and Sharna Tolfree)

Partner organization/or citizen scientist: I work for Audubon North Carolina, the state office of the National Audubon Society

Hometown/Area you regularly look for plovers: Southeastern North Carolina

How many years have you been reporting Great Lakes Piping Plover observations? Audubon North Carolina has been reporting since 2007, me since I started here in 2011

Why do you look for piping plovers on the wintering grounds? Including, why do you take the extra step to report that sighting to us? We look for banded Piping Plovers in order to document what areas they use during migration and winter. We are often at area inlets, which are habitats non-breeding Piping Plovers favor but which are also often threatened by coastal engineering projects. I also personally like looking for them because it’s fun to find a new individual and fun to see “old friends” return.

If you could tell people one thing about GLPIPL (bird and/or recovery effort) what would it be: Piping Plovers need good habitat year-round.

What do you do when you’re not out looking for banded birds? When I’m not looking for banded Piping Plovers, I’m often banding or looking for banded American Oystercatchers.

One thought on “Winter Observers

  1. Pingback: Update on 2015 Rescued Captive-Reared & Released #GLPIPL #ornithology | Great Lakes Piping Plover Recovery Effort

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