Table of Contents
ISRN Ecology
Volume 2011, Article ID 297684, 10 pages
Research Article

Habitat and Landscape Suitability as Indicators of Bird Abundance in Created and Restored Wetlands

1Waquoit Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve, East Falmouth, MA 02536, USA
2Department of Biological & Allied Health Sciences, Ohio Northern University, Ada, OH 45810, USA
3McPhail Center for Environmental Studies, Denison University, Granville, OH 43023, USA

Received 6 June 2011; Accepted 14 July 2011

Academic Editor: A. Ridley

Copyright © 2011 Jordan W. Mora et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


We used aerial photography, field measurements, and bird surveys to evaluate 7 Ohio mitigation wetlands for their capacity to support avian guilds at both local and landscape scales. At the local scale, we assessed each wetland with habitat suitability indices (HSI) for eight wetland-dependent bird species as indicators for four guilds: wading, diving, dabbling, and emergent dependent. We characterized landscapes within 2.5 km of each wetland by measuring the buffer width, road density, connectedness, and anthropogenic land development. The changes in landscape variables over time were determined by comparison of aerial photos taken near the time of wetland construction and near the time of this study. Bird abundance data were poorly correlated with HSI scores but were well described with logistic models of buffer width, wetland area, and road density. Our results suggest that landscape variables are better predictors of bird abundance than HSI scores for these guilds in these wetlands.