Research is conducted regularly at Quivira to determine animal and plant baseline data, to monitor trends in populations and in changes in the natural communities, and to measure management effectiveness. Here are the primary ongoing programs.
Throughout each year, formal field surveys are conducted by Refuge staff and volunteers. Shorebird surveys, to collect data on populations, are conducted Refuge-wide every other week from April through October. Winter waterfowl surveys are conducted annually in January, with additional waterfowl surveys every other week from September through April. Nest surveys are conducted each summer to determine Interior Least Tern populations. In addition, Bald Eagle surveys are held each January.
To view the latest surveys, click on this link: Biological Surveys
In order to better equip planning efforts for the Comprehensive Conservation Plan (CCP) process, a baseline vegetation map of Quivira was identified as a necessity. Conducted in 2010 and 2011, development of the vegetation map and associated report was a multi-step process, involving study of aerial photographs, several months of ground-truthing of vegetation types, and data analysis.
Learn about Vegetation Mapping
Quivira is planning its future. The National Wildlife Refuge Improvement Act (1997) requires that all National Wildlife Refuges have completed and implemented a Comprehensive Conservation Plan, or CCP, by 2012. Quivira is currently working on its plan, scheduled for completion by the end of 2012.
Quivira's CCP: find out more
Chronic Wasting Disease, or CWD, is a disorder affecting deer in many areas of the country. Although not documented in the Quivira area, more information is needed on deer population density, movement patterns, and group dynamics to better assess the potential spread of the disease should it ever occur in the area. An ongoing study at Quivira is being conducted by Sterling College to help make those determinations.
Additional monitoring projects are anticipated in the near future, such as vegetation surveys to determine plant community response to management actions such as grazing and fire. Follow-up on smaller-scale surveys, such as Breeding Bird Census routes and Bell's Vireo mapping, are also planned.
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The tallest North American bird, and one of the rarest: now numbering about 600 in the world, there were once as few as 16.