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The U.S. Pacific coast population of the western snowy plover (Charadrius nivosus nivosus; plover) has declined due to loss and degradation of coastal habitats, predation, and anthropogenic disturbance. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service listed the subspecies in 1993 as threatened under the Endangered Species Act due to the population declines and habitat loss. Predation of nests and chicks has been identified as an important cause of historic population declines, and thus, most predator management actions for this subspecies are focused on reducing this pressure. In recent years, common ravens (Corvus corax; ravens) have become the most common and pervasive predators of plover nests and chicks, especially in areas with subsidized food sources for ravens and sites without predator management. We compiled data from a variety of sources to document the impact of raven predation on plover nesting success. We discuss current raven management and suggest several tools and strategies to increase plover nesting success, including multi-state approval for the use of the avicide DRC-1339, the use of lures and new trap types, and an increase in funding for predator management. The lack of coordinated and integrated management continues to impede the recovery of the Pacific coast plover population.
Strong, Cheryl; Neuman, Kriss K.; Hutchinson, Jenny L.; Miller, Jamie K.; Clark, Amber L.; Chang, Lena; Iwanicha, Joanna; Feucht, Elizabeth; Lau, Matthew J.; Lauten, David J.; Markegard, Sarah; Pearl, Benjamin; Sherer, David L.; Tertes, Rachel; Tharratt, Susie; and Wooten, Travis
"Common Raven Impacts on Nesting Western Snowy Plovers: Integrating Management to Facilitate Species Recovery,"
Human–Wildlife Interactions: Vol. 15:
3, Article 19.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.usu.edu/hwi/vol15/iss3/19