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Temporal Variation in Forest Bird Survey Data from Tutuila Island, American Samoa

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Title: Temporal Variation in Forest Bird Survey Data from Tutuila Island, American Samoa
Authors: Freifeld, Holly B.
Solek, Chris
Tualaulelei, Ailao
Issue Date: Jan 2004
Publisher: University of Hawai'i Press
Citation: Freifeld HB, Solek C, Tualaulelei A. 2004. Temporal variation in forest bird survey data from Tutuila Island, American Samoa. Pac Sci 58(1): 99-117.
Abstract: Avian census data from tropical Pacific islands often are limited to
brief, one-time surveys. These efforts yield information about species' presence
and distribution but reveal little about variation in abundance through time.
This variation may be important for refining and optimizing survey methods
and, in turn, assessing habitat preferences, population status, activity patterns, or
the impact of disturbance on the abundance and distribution of island birds. The
objective of this study was to determine if intra- or interannual patterns exist in
the recorded abundance of resident land birds. Forest birds on Tutuila Island,
American Samoa, were surveyed each month from 1992 to 1996 at 35 stations
on six transects distributed around the island. We used multiple regression
techniques to determine that seasonal patterns in detected abundance exist in
several species, most notably the Purple-capped Fruit-dove, Ptilinopus porphyraceus,
and the Wattled Honeyeater, Foulehaio carunculata. Intraannual patterns
may be associated with seasonally variable vocalizations or with concentrations
of birds at particular resources. Interannual trends in abundance were not islandwide
for any native species during the study period; they were localized and
as such may be attributable to small-scale changes in habitat rather than to
overall changes in population size. The results of this study, especially that the
abundance of nonmigratory island birds is seasonally variable, reinforce the importance
of year-round monitoring in the study and conservation of Pacific
birds.
URI/DOI: http://hdl.handle.net/10125/2713
ISSN: 0030-8870
Appears in Collections:Pacific Science Volume 58, Number 1, 2004



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