Golden Eagle Habitat Selection in San Diego, California

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Beginning in 2014, the U.S. Geological Survey and Bloom Biological Inc. began conducting telemetry research on golden eagles in San Diego, Orange, and western Riverside Counties of southern California.

In a new USGS report, authors provide predictions of population-level habitat selection for golden eagles in San Diego County based on environmental covariates related to land use and terrain. Modeled results indicate strong avoidance of urban areas, moderate avoidance of exurban areas, and avoidance of a buffer around these landscape elements. In contrast, eagles prefer more rugged areas in higher elevation terrain. Suitable habitat may be unoccupied by golden eagles for numerous reasons; for example, habitat patches may be too small to support a territory, lack of functional connectivity to other eagle habitat, disturbance from recreation or other human activities, or lack of prey.

Tracey, J.A., Madden, M.C., Bloom, P.H., Katzner, T.E., Fisher, R.N., 2018, Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos) habitat selection as a function of land use and terrain, San Diego, California: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2018-1067, p. 13,


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