The white ibis is one of the most abundant birds in south Florida, primarily found in the Everglades and along the coast. Historic wetland and coastal habitat deterioration has prompted the white ibis to increasingly adapt to urban environments. This species is in its early stages of urbanization, with its first urban colonies only recently established. It is not yet known how these urban breeding grounds might affect white ibises’ long-term health and well-being. Researchers will monitor the nests and fledglings of both urban and natural colonies to better understand changes in ibis diet, movement and behavior and any resulting health challenges for urbanized birds. Findings will help inform conservation and management of white ibises and potentially other coastal wetland bird species expanding into urban areas.
Grant amount awarded
University of Georgia
Sonia M. Hernandez, DVM, PhD, DACZM