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1 September 2018 Distribution and Abundance of Breeding Striated Caracaras in the Falkland Islands (Malvinas)
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Abstract

We conducted surveys of breeding pairs of the endemic and globally “Near Threatened” Striated Caracara (Phalcoboenus australis) on 79 outer islands in the Falklands archipelago (Islas Malvinas) during the austral-summer breeding seasons of 2013–2014 and 2014–2015. A total of 354 breeding pairs (defined as pairs with evidence of egg-laying), or an archipelago-wide adult breeding population of at least 0.05 birds/km2 was recorded. An additional 477 probable breeding pairs also were found. The distribution of breeding pairs remains similar to that found during surveys in the 1990s and 2000s. Grand Jason, Steeple Jason, New Island, Beauchêne Island, and Bird Island, the five islands with the highest numbers of breeding pairs, accounted for half of the total breeding population. “Vegetationally pristine” islands with dense areas of tussac grass (Poa flabellata) and high densities of small burrowing seabirds—namely Bird Island, Saddle Island, and Beauchêne Island—supported the highest densities of breeding pairs. Eighty percent of all pairs occurred on National Nature Reserves or on privately owned nature sanctuaries. Our surveys suggest that sustained protection of key breeding sites is critical for the long-term conservation of this species. We recommend that populations of Striated Caracaras at Tierra del Fuego also be surveyed and that the global population status of the species be reassessed.

© 2018 The Raptor Research Foundation, Inc.
Micky Reeves and Keith L. Bildstein "Distribution and Abundance of Breeding Striated Caracaras in the Falkland Islands (Malvinas)," Journal of Raptor Research 52(3), 309-315, (1 September 2018). https://doi.org/10.3356/JRR-17-31.1
Received: 20 April 2017; Accepted: 25 November 2017; Published: 1 September 2018
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