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FWS releases biological opinion for Everglades conservation

Cara J

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On July 22, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service released a biological opinion intended to improve habitat restoration and species conservation in Everglades National Park. In particular, the opinion focuses on improving nesting habitat for the endangered Cape Sable seaside sparrow. The Cape Sable seaside sparrow (Ammodramus maritimus mirabilis) is one of eight remaining subspecies of seaside sparrows. As a ground nesting species, the Cape Sable seaside sparrow requires long periods of consecutive dry days in which to nest and fledge their young. If conditions are too wet, the nests flood and the young do not survive. The endangered Cape Sable seaside sparrow is found at Everglades National Park, and is the subject of recent conservation measures. ©David LaPuma According to the biological opinion, conditions in the Everglades have been too wet in recent years to accommodate successful breeding by the sparrow. Many factors, such as vegetation changes, natural disasters, and human management, have altered seasonal water patterns in areas where the sparrow was previously found in abundance. This change in the Everglades hydroperiod has resulted in decreased reproductive success for this endangered bird. To make matters worse, an exceptionally wet winter has resulted in nearly 1,000 less sparrow nests [...]


Read more: http://wildlife.org/fws-releases-biological-opinion-for-everglades-conservation/

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