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Providing evidence to improve practice

Action: Restore or create kelp forests Bird Conservation

Key messages

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A before-and-study in the USA found that the densities of five of the nine bird species analysed increased following kelp forest restoration.


Supporting evidence from individual studies


A before-and-after study between 1969-1973 and 1984-1986 on a rocky shoreline in southern California, USA (Bradley & Bradley 1993), found that shorebirds were significantly more numerous after kelp Macrocystis pyrifera forest restoration. Among nine species of shorebird analysed, the density of five (spotted sandpiper Actitus macularia, wandering tattler Heteroscelus incanus, whimbrel Numenius phaeopus, black turnstone Arenaria melanocephala and ruddy turnstone Arenaria interpres) increased. Territorial species (spotted sandpiper, wandering tattler and whimbrel) were twice as abundant in the second census. Species that do not forage in algal windthrow, such as the black-bellied plover Pluvialis squatarola, remained stable over the two census periods. Complete counts of all shorebirds encountered along a 4 km census route were recorded year-round over the years of the two censuses.


Referenced papers

Please cite as:

Williams, D.R., Child, M.F., Dicks, L.V., Ockendon, N., Pople, R.G., Showler, D.A., Walsh, J.C., zu Ermgassen, E.K.H.J. & Sutherland, W.J. (2019) Bird Conservation. Pages 141-290 in: W.J. Sutherland, L.V. Dicks, N. Ockendon, S.O. Petrovan & R.K. Smith (eds) What Works in Conservation 2019. Open Book Publishers, Cambridge, UK.