The Kern River Preserve (KRP) in southern California is one of the largest remnants of contiguous riparian forest in the western United States. Although this preserve has long been considered a biodiversity hotspot, its value for migratory birds as a stopover (sites where birds rest and refuel during migration) has remained unexplored. In 2022 and 2023, the Southern Sierra Research Station, in association with the San Fernando Valley Audubon Society, installed a state-of-the-art Motus radiotelemetry array to track the movements of migratory Western Tanagers within the KRP. This presentation will describe the main findings regarding stopover habitat use and long-distance migratory routes followed by birds after departing the KRP. The results of this research underscore the importance of the KRP for migratory birds and the need to continue studying the migration ecology of birds.
Edwin Jacobo is a doctoral candidate at Washington State University, where he studies the stopover ecology of migratory birds in North America. Edwin has a bachelor’s degree in biology and a master’s in environmental sciences from Universidad Autonóma de Nayarit, Mexico. When not doing fieldwork, Edwin likes fishing and birding with his wife and spending time with his family in Mexico. Edwin is interested in migratory bird responses to environmental change, particularly climate-related disturbances. His research focuses on multi-level avian responses (from physiological to community changes) to alterations in habitat quality caused by wildfire, drought, and tree mortality. Edwin seeks to understand the mechanisms underlying bird responses to environmental change to inform habitat management and conservation needs.
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