This semester, we did not have great success finding evidence of bird mortality around Charlottesville. Throughout our ‘bioblitz’ time, we were only able to site four deceased birds, two of which did not seem to have a correlation with building design. Looking forward, we have identified how our methods could be improved in the future:
- Better communication with facilities management staff
- This semester we had difficulty coordinating with the staff because there were several maintenance staff that were not assigned to a specific location. This made it difficult to ask them to record and report any bird mortality sightings at our two chosen buildings
- Future groups should try to coordinate with all staff, and possibly ask them to have a collection bin for birds that we could count, in addition to our scheduled observation times
2. Look into additional buildings that could be problems, rather than simply focusing on Campbell and Nau.
- Some other buildings that could pose problems are: Rice Hall and some of the new dorms
We also looked into additional things that could be done at UVA to raise awareness about the issue of bird mortality. A few ideas we had included:
- Art Display
- Save and use any dead birds found throughout the semester in an art display, like the Audubon Society in New York City
- Possible locations: Campbell Hall, Downtown Mall
- This could act as an effort to increase public awareness in the Charlottesville community.
- Citizen Science Program for Collection of Dead Birds
- Create a program for UVA students to collect and report data on dead birds that they spot around Ground
- Options: phone number for texting in pictures and information, online submission form, or iPhone application
- Publicize this program through Facebook, science and A-school classes, tabling, and emailing listservs
Post by Kaye Thomas, Katherine Roderick, and Abby Curcio