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School of Environment and Natural Resources


Graduate Exit Seminar - Zoe Korpi

Plan to join Zoe Korpi's graduate exit seminar on April 26, 2024, at 9:00 am in Heffner Building 108 or via Zoom. Zoe will present, "Lake-crossing behavior of migratory songbirds: Assessing potential collision risk with offshore wind on Lake Erie."

Abstract: The Great Lakes Region serves as a critical movement corridor for songbirds with millions passing through the region and depending on shoreline habitats for stopover and refueling during migration. As demand for renewable energy resources increases, the development of offshore wind in the region is likely given its high energy capacity and accessibility to development. The collision risk associated with offshore wind projects in the Great Lakes Region cannot be fully determined without first understanding the lake-crossing behavior of migratory birds. With many migratory bird populations experiencing steep declines, it is crucial to mitigate risk associated with anthropogenic sources of mortality. Utilizing automated radio telemetry and the Motus Wildlife Tracking System, we tracked individual songbirds south of the Lake Erie shoreline to observe movements and routes taken on approach to, around, or across the lake. Our project aims to (1) determine the prevalence of lake-crossing behavior of songbirds on Lake Erie, (2) identify key pre-crossing sites and crossing routes used, (3) and identify the landscape characteristics of high-use sites on the shoreline. As the degree to which offshore wind impacts migratory birds is still relatively unknown, this work will hopefully contribute to exposure risk assessments when considering siting of future offshore wind projects in the Great Lakes.

Advisors: Dr. Christopher Tonra and Dr. Stephen Matthews