Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Estimating the distribution, population status, and trends of New Zealand scaup (Aythya novaeseelandiae)

TitleEstimating the distribution, population status, and trends of New Zealand scaup (Aythya novaeseelandiae)
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsGreene, BS
JournalNotornis
Volume68
Issue2
Pagination108-130
Type of ArticleFull article
Keywordsdiving duck, indicator, lakes, swamp birds, voluntary, waterbirds, wetlands
Abstract

 

New Zealand scaup (Aythya novaeseelandiae) counts are collated from a total of 12,145 site visits nationally between 1888 and 2018 to estimate their distribution, population status, and trends. Based on systematic counts of large flocks on lakes between 1984–2018, there are about 11,000 New Zealand scaup nationally. This estimate must be interpreted with caution, as if birds are highly mobile the risk of overestimating the population is high. The distribution of New Zealand scaup strongholds (>50 adults) is compared to historical descriptions and trends in water quality. As lakes become more eutrophic over time, the birds move and the population declines. Research should focus on aerial vs ground counts, telemetry/satellite and/or banding studies of bird movement, gender, diet, predation, and littoral zone quantity and quality (<10 m deep). To achieve this, it is recommended that a national waterbird management and monitoring plan be developed.

 

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