Science

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Tundra Swan Productivity

During the month of December, biologists conduct productivity and recruitment surveys of the overwintering tundra swan population.  Biologists look for number of young swans (cygnets) in family groups, the total flock size, and the number of cygnets in each flock. This data is combined with data from other national wildlife refuges and state lands in North Carolina, along with seven other states in the Atlantic flyway to help determine the productivity of northern breeding grounds.

 

Migratory Waterfowl Monitoring

Waterfowl surveys are essential to inform management; biologists conduct ground and aerial surveys during the peak use months of November- February.   Aerial surveys are conducted several times during the winter months. The ground survey data is also used as part of the Integrated Waterbird Management and Monitoring (IWMM) Initiative.  The IWMM uses data from conservation partners along the Atlantic Flyway to inform management efforts at refuge, state and flyway levels.

 

Wild Horse Impact Monitoring

Service biologists monitor refuge areas wild horses have access to and areas horses are excluded from to determine impacts to habitats.  Information gathered will inform refuge management and be available for future revisions of the Currituck Banks Wild Horse Management Plan.