As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Monday 22 October 2018

Nighthawks' migration route tracked in search of clues to species' steep decline

In a quest to develop conservation strategies to protect a threatened species whose population has declined 80 per cent in the last 50 years, scientists at the University of Alberta have discovered the enigmatic nighthawk travels 20,000 kilometres each year in its annual migration from north of Fort McMurray to the Amazon rainforest in Brazil.
"Until now, we've understood very little about migration routes and wintering grounds of the nighthawk," explained Elly Knight, a Ph.D. candidate who worked on the research project with her colleague Janet Ng, U of A conservation biologist Erin Bayne and researchers from the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center in Washington, D.C.
The research team needed to track the nighthawk to understand what risks it might encounter during the eight months it spends outside of Canada each year.
"We were surprised to find that they spent their winter in Brazil because most observations of them are from further south, in Argentina. We also learned that nighthawks return to almost exactly where they summered in the past year," said Knight.

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