Resources related to Species of Concern

Marine Bird Populations of Prince William Sound, Alaska,

We estimated the summer and winter abundance of marine birds in Prince William
Sound, Alaska, following the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill, examined changes in population size
between pre-spill and post-spill surveys, and compared pre- to post-oil spill population trends in
the oiled zone of the Sound relative to trends in the unoiled zone.
Ninety-nine species of birds were observed on surveys. Not all species were equally vulnerable to
the oil spill because of the seasonal and geographic distribution. Estimated populations of 15 to

Damage Assessment Closeout-Injury Assessment of Hydrocarbon Uptake by Sea Ducks

The goal of this project was to determine whether the Exxon Valdez oil spill had measurable sublethal effects on six species of migratory and resident seaducks in Prince William Sound and the Kodiak Archipelago. The six seaduck species were harlequin ducks, Barrow's and common goldeneyes, and surf, black, and white-winged scoters. The harlequin ducks are both resident in and winter migrants to the oil spill area. The other species do not breed in the oil spill area but are winter migrants.

Recovery Status of Barrow's Goldeneyes

Data available at the onset of this project (population trends and indices of contaminant exposure) raised concern that Barrow's goldeneye populations may have been injured by the oil spill, may not be fully recovered, and may continue to suffer deleterious effects of the spill. This project is designed to critically assess the recovery status of Barrow's goldeneye populations through assemblage and analysis of all existent, relevant data.

Reproductive ecology and habitat use of Pacific Black Scoters (Melanitta nigra americana) nesting on the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, Alaska

Abstract.—Abundance indices of Black Scoters (Melanitta nigra americana) breeding in Alaska indicate a long- term population decline without obvious cause(s). However, few life history data are available for the species in North America. In 2001-2004, information was collected on nesting habitat and reproductive parameters (i.e. com- ponents of productivity) from a population of Black Scoters nesting on the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, Alaska. A total of 157 nests were found over four years.

Effects of temperature and mussel size on intertidal mussel bed infaunal communities: implications for climate change and biodiversity.

While mussel beds can withstand the changing tides, global climate change may cause damage to these diverse ecosystems. As the amount of carbon dioxide in the air increases, so does the amount of carbon dioxide dissolved in seawater. The resulting acidification changes the basic chemistry of the oceans and decreases the growth rate of organisms which rely on dissolved calcium carbonate to build their shells.

Relative roles of eelgrass vs. hard-mixed substrates as habitatfor scoters (Melanitta spp.) in Puget Sound

Scoters ( Melanitta spp. ) are sea ducks that breed in freshwater wetlands of Canada and Alaska and winter in estuaries and bays on the Pacific and Atlantic coasts (Fig. 1). As with most sea ducks, scoter populations have declined in many parts of their Pacific Coast ranges. Three species of scoter can be found in wintering in Puget Sound, the common scoter ( Melanitta nigra ), the white-winged scoter ( Melanitta deglandi ) and the surf scoter ( Melanitta perspicillata ). The combined population of all three scoters declined by 57% between 1978-79 and 1992-99.

Sea Duck Joint Venture Strategic Plan 2008-2012

The fifteen species of sea ducks (Tribe Mergini) are the most poorly understood group of waterfowl in North America. The most basic biological information is unknown for some species. Few species have reliable population indices or estimates of annual productivity, and much of our knowledge is based on a very few, localized studies. Also, current survey design is unable to accurately estimate sea duck harvest.