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Found 10 records similar to Wild Bird Health and Contaminants, Oil Sands Region
Colonial Waterbird Health and Contaminants
This dataset contains metals, including total mercury levels, stable nitrogen isotope values, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, and polychlorinated dibenzodioxin (PCDDs) and polychlorinated dibenzofuran (PCDFs) levels in eggs of seven species of colonial waterbirds (California Gull, Franklin’s Gull, Herring Gull, Ring-billed Gull, Caspian Tern, Common Tern and Forster's Tern). Data are available for 1977, 2009, and 2011 – 2015 for sites located in the Peace-Athabasca Delta/western Lake Athabasca. Geographic coverage was expanded in 2014 and 2015 to include additional egg collection sites across Alberta, Saskatchewan, and the Northwest Territories. While no applicable guidelines exist for these measurements, our expert assessment is that the observed levels of mercury are not likely to pose a risk to these bird populations.
Monitoring contaminants in gull and tern eggs is a useful tool for gaining insights into local environmental conditions because gulls and terns are integrators of processes occurring at lower levels in the food web and their eggs are generally formed using local food sources. Therefore, the chemical composition of the egg will reflect the chemical characteristics of the region in the vicinity of the breeding colony, including level of contaminants, such as mercury. Eggs are collected any time after laying, ideally well before hatching, but after the full clutch size (3 eggs) has been reached, generally around the middle of June. The collection site is a colony on Lake Mamawi, in the Peace Athabasca Delta; in addition to collection sites outside the park.
Waterfowl and mammals harvested and trapped at various locations in the oil sands region and in reference locations are assessed for contaminant burdens and toxicology. Wildlife samples are obtained from local hunters and trappers. Tissue samples are analysed for concentrations of oil sands-related contaminants (heavy metals, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, and naphthenic acids). Dead and moribund birds collected from tailing ponds are also evaluated for levels and effects of contaminants.
Herring gull (Larus arentatus, HERG), great blue heron (Ardea Herodias GBHE), double-crested cormorant (Phalacrocorax auritus, DCCO) and ring-billed gull (Larus delawarensis, RBGU) have been monitored in Pukaskwa National Park since 1977 as part of the colonial waterbird monitoring program. A complete count of active nests on islands found along the ~120km of coast of Pukaskwa is conducted based on the Canadian Wildlife Service (CWS) protocol. The nest count is carried out during the peak of breeding over a period of 2-3 weeks. From 1977 – 1981, surveys were conducted annually and used an island numbering system (Old Colony Number in datasheet).
Tree swallow (Tachycineta bicolor) nest boxes are installed in oil sands area and in reference locations to monitor contaminant levels and impacts on tree swallow nestlings. The exposure to tree swallow nestlings to air-borne oil sands-related contaminants such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) is assessed using passive air samplers. Measures of avian health are examined in relation to location of sampling and contaminants measured.
These fish-eating colonial waterbirds breed and nest in colonies on islands in and around Fathom Five National Marine Park. Five species of colonial waterbird are monitored. These birds and their eggs are effective measures of environmental contamination and aquatic ecosystem health.
Bank swallows (Riparia riparia) and Barn swallows (Hirundo rustica) have been listed as Threatened species by the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC). In Jasper National Park, black swifts nest at variety of sites associated with vertical soil banks, including riverbanks and road cuts. Barn swallows nest at variety of sites associated with vegetation and artificial structures, including meadows and culverts. Data are collected by trained observers during the breeding season to identify breeding sites to inform management action.
Monitoring of the number of eggs and nests for the Great black-backed and European herring gulls . Field data from 1996 to 2015. Many islands in the MANPRC are used by the Great black-backed and European herring gulls for nesting. The presence of this species is characteristic of the inland ecology of the park.
Bird sanctuaries areas of importance for the protection of migratory birds, their nests, and eggs. Nunavut has an abundance of sites favourable to the migratory habits of several bird species.
This program assesses demographic parameters and breeding abundance of 5 species of ground (burrow) nesting seabirds: Pigeon Guillemot (Cepphus columba), Rhinoceros Auklet (Cerorhinca monocerata), Glaucous-winged Gull (Larus glaucescens), Leach's Storm-Petrel (Oceanodroma leucorhoa) and Fork-tailed Storm-Petrel (Oceanodroma furcata) at the Seabird Rocks Colony through population counts and capture-mark-recapture techniques. Counts of individuals at the colony are done 3-4 times throughout a breeding season (May-July) to estimate the size of the breeding populations. A banding (capture-mark-recapture) program to estimate annual survivorship of the two storm-petrel species is done via mist-net arrays on two consecutive nights in early May and/or mid-to-late July. This project seeks to track the present status of the ground and burrrow-nesting seabirds on Seabird Rocks and any recovery that may occur due to future habitat restoration and/or predator-control measures.