Master of Science (MS)
First Advisor's Name
Philip K. Stoddard
First Advisor's Committee Title
Second Advisor's Name
Third Advisor's Name
Joel T. Heinen
Date of Defense
This study documents the 1996 and 1997 autumn migration seasons at Grassy Key for 16 species of raptors (hawks, eagles, and falcons). My results indicate the Florida Keys are a major raptor migration flyway (over 26,000 sightings). I identified factors influencing watch-site location in the Keys. Northbound flights must be included to avoid inflating southbound counts. By removing the "season effect" (natural rise, peak, and wane of raptor numbers during migration), I demonstrate wind has little consistent effect on raptor counts in the Keys. I further demonstrate we do not see more raptors on cold front days than on non-cold front days. However, cold fronts following tropical storms (as in 1996) increase the number of raptors observed for most species. I conducted a nightly roosting survey on Boot Key resulting in near or over 3,000 raptor sightings per season and present a model to predict aerial counts from roosting counts.
Brashear, Cindy Beth, "Autumn raptor migration through the Florida Keys" (1998). FIU Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 1790.
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