[CT Birds] population estimates (long .... and probably boring)

David F Provencher david.f.provencher at dom.com
Tue Oct 4 11:31:58 EDT 2011


Thanks Chris,

As you know, my background is technical and I am (sadly) not unfamiliar with statistics and the protocols (including their weaknesses) for censusing birds. Additionally, my birding is very rarely done at the known birding hot spots. For me, walking and hiking are as important as the birding, so hiking boots and sweat (and often blood) are as much a part of my birding as binoculars are. Being a hard core hiker has given me a pretty decent ability to judge distances in the woods as well, which helps to more accurately assess population densities. I agree that there are more Ceruleans breeding in CT than a lot of birders may realize (I mentioned that to a few correspondents privately yesterday) and southeastern CT has a good distribution of them. Although the sites tend to be scattered and of very low population density.

I believe these two numbers are significantly off the mark high, especially with regards to Acadians. If there were that many Acadians in CT they would be the most common forest interior flycatcher in many places. To put it simply, they are not, they are uncommon to absent across all the areas of CT forest I hike, and I hike over most of the state. I have never found anything like the density levels these numbers represent for Acadians, and only in  a few places for Ceruleans. I realize you could have written ten times as much info on censusing protocols and statistics as you did (thankfully you didn't!), but I think this may have been an "oops" moment in a very important and needed published work. Clearly you had reservations on this data at the time of review. On balance I think the strength of this excellent publication far outweighs its few weaknesses. Hopefully, as we move forward, the quality of the data will get even better.

Dave




-----Original Message-----
From: ctbirds-bounces at lists.ctbirding.org [mailto:ctbirds-bounces at lists.ctbirding.org] On Behalf Of Chris Elphick
Sent: Tuesday, October 04, 2011 8:17 AM
To: ctbirds at lists.ctbirding.org
Cc: chris.elphick at uconn.edu
Subject: [CT Birds] population estimates (long .... and probably boring)

Paul,


A few responses to your question ... a bit long-winded I'm afraid ....


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