Avian Studies in the New York-New Jersey Harbor Estuary

Case Name:


United States of America

Restoration Types:

Habitat Creation; Habitat Enhancement; Population Support


Affected DOI Resources:

Migratory Birds


Staten Island


Monitoring / Completed

Project Description

In 1991, the Natural Resource Trustees for the Exxon Bayway oil spill transferred $62,960.46 to the Manomet Bird Observatory (MBO) to fund one year of avian studies in the NY-NJ Harbor Estuary. Since the mid-1980s, MBO collected data on bird communities for their New York Harbor Project, including information on avian prey populations (fish and macroinvertebrates), foraging behaviors (strike rates and foraging success), and use of wetlands by waterfowl and wading birds. Building off these studies, MBO conducted surveys to examine the effects of the loss and degradation of coastal habitats on bird populations caused by the 1990 oil spills in the Arthur Kill and Kill Van Kull. This included monitoring the hatching and fledging success of several wading bird species, including great egrets, snowy egrets, little blue herons, and glossy ibises (commonly referred to as the "Harbor Herons"), on Shooters Island, Prall's Island, and the Isle of Meadows; and assessing the wildlife values and productivity of six wetland sites for passerines, waterfowl, and wading birds. The data collected by these studies were used by the Trustees to better understand the impacts of oil spills on coastal birds, plan restoration projects, and prioritize properties for land acquisition.

Restoration Land Ownership

County or Municipal; Private; State

Parties Implementing Restoration

Manomet Bird Observatory

DOI Project Representatives

Fish and Wildlife Service

Restoration Documents

Document NameDocument Date
No records to display.

Map View


New Jersey Ecological Services Field Office

4 East Jimmie Leeds Road, Suite 4, Galloway, NJ 08205 | (609) 383-3938 | http://www.fws.gov/northeast/njfieldoffice/

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