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Key areas for wintering North American herons

January 1, 1998

Nearly all North American heron populations are migratory, but details of where they winter are little known. Locations where North American herons winter were identified using banding recovery data. North American herons winter from Canada through northern South America but especially in eastern North America south of New York, Florida, California, Louisiana, Texas, Mexico and Cuba, these areas accounting for 63% of winter recoveries. We identified regions where recoveries for various species clustered as "key areas." These forty-three areas constitute a network of areas that hold sites that likely are important to wintering North American herons. Within each area, we identify specific sites that are potentially important to wintering herons. The relative importance of each area and site within the network must be evaluated by further on the ground inventory. Because of biases inherent in the available data, these hypothesized key areas are indicative rather than exhaustive. As a first cut, this network of areas can serve to inform further inventory activities and can provide an initial basis to begin planning for the year-round conservation of North American heron populations.

Citation Information

Publication Year 1998
Title Key areas for wintering North American herons
Authors T. Mikuska, J.A. Kushlan, S. Hartley
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Waterbirds
Index ID 70020420
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse