Linking Remote Sensing & Waterfowl Behavior Data
The Central Valley of California is the predominant wintering area for waterfowl and shorebirds in the Pacific Flyway. Using remote sensing data, researchers and habitat managers can track and quantify the effects of drought on availability of wetlands and other flooded waterfowl habitats. Bird locations from GPS marked waterfowl may be used to evaluate performance of remote sensing data for classifying habitats that are flooded and available for waterfowl. Importantly, high-resolution telemetry data recorded in near real-time can also provide information on how waterfowl respond to water management decisions intended to provide adequate habitat for wintering waterfowl. If availability of habitats to waterfowl is highly variable as a function of bird behavior (determined using telemetry), food resources may be insufficient to support target populations under conservation objectives. This research combines remote sensing data with high-resolution, near real-time waterfowl telemetry data to inform and optimize management of water supplies and habitats in the Central Valley of California.