Habitat Use by Foraging Northern Harriers on Nantucket Island, Massachusetts

TitleHabitat Use by Foraging Northern Harriers on Nantucket Island, Massachusetts
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2009
AuthorsMassey, Blake H., Griffin Curtice R., and McGarigal Kevin M.
JournalThe Wilson Journal of Ornithology
Volume121
Pagination765 - 769
Date Published12/2009
Keywordsclimate science center, GRASSLANDS, HEATHLANDS
Abstract

The Northern Harrier (Circus cyaneus) is of major conservation and management concern in the northeastern United States. We studied habitat use of foraging adult male and female harriers on Nantucket Island, Massachusetts among four habitat types: grassland, shrubland, mowed, and burned. Overall, foraging indices were not correlated to nest proximity and harriers foraged significantly less frequently in mowed habitat than in the other habitat types. Management of harrier habitat in the northeastern United States may not exclusively require grasslands, and mowing reduces foraging habitat.