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BROCHURE RACK

Nine percent decline in US water birds in last year

14/07/2008 16:29:02

Highlights from the survey

  • Mallard estimated population of 7.7 million birds, similar to last year's estimate of 8.3 million birds and the long-term average.
  • Blue-winged teal estimated population of 6.6 million birds, similar to last year's estimate of 6.7 million birds and 45 percent above the long-term average.
  • The estimated population of green-winged teal stands at 3.0 million and is similar to last year and 57 percent above the long-term average.
  • The estimated population of 2.7 million gadwall was 19 percent below last year and 56 percent above the long-term average.
  • The estimated number of 1.1 million redheads was similar to last year and was 66 percent above the long-term average.
  • The canvasback estimate was 489,000 which is 44 percent below last year's estimate of 865,000 and 14 percent below the long-term average.
  • The estimated abundance of northern shovelers (3.5 million) was 23 percent below last year and 56 percent above their long-term average.
  • Scaup (lesser and greater combined), estimated at 3.7 million, were similar to last year and 27 percent below the long-term average.
  • The 2.6 million estimate for northern pintails is 22 percent below last year and 36 percent below the 1955-2007 average.
July 2008. The preliminary estimate of duck numbers from the 2008 US Waterfowl Breeding Population and Habitat Survey was just over 37 million, which is a nine percent decline from last year's estimate, but still 11 percent greater than the 1955-2007 average. In the U.S. and Canadian prairies, population estimates of many species declined; while populations increased in the boreal forest to the north, most probably reflecting in part those birds that overflew the prairies because of drier habitat conditions there.

Covers two million square miles
The Waterfowl Breeding Population and Habitat Survey, the largest and most comprehensive survey of its kind in the world, samples two million square miles across the north-central and northeastern United States, south-central, eastern, and northern Canada, and Alaska. The survey estimates the number of ducks on the continent's most important nesting grounds.

Population estimates for American black ducks, ring-necked ducks, American wigeon, bufflehead, goldeneyes, and mergansers surveyed in eastern North America were similar to last year as well as their 1990-2007 averages.

This preliminary report does not include estimates from surveys conducted by State or Provincial agencies.  The entire 2008 Trends in Duck Breeding Populations report can be downloaded from the Service's Web site at  http://www.fws.gov/migratorybirds/Black duck USFWS

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