Join for FREE
It only takes a minute!
Zeiss - Always on the lookout for something special – Shop now

Welcome to BirdForum.
BirdForum is the net's largest birding community, dedicated to wild birds and birding, and is absolutely FREE! You are most welcome to register for an account, which allows you to take part in lively discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.

Biologists Discover First Swallow-tailed Kite Nest in North Carolina

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rating: Thread Rating: 1 votes, 5.00 average.
Old Sunday 2nd June 2013, 00:25   #1
KC Foggin
Super Moderator
BF Supporter 2019
 
KC Foggin's Avatar

 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Myrtle Beach SC "Smiling Faces, Beautiful Places"
Posts: 255,866
Biologists Discover First Swallow-tailed Kite Nest in North Carolina

From the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


Biologists Discover First Swallow-tailed Kite Nest in North Carolina

RIEGELWOOD, N.C. (May 31, 2013) — Biologists with the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission discovered the first swallow-tailed kite nest in North Carolina on May 7 while conducting aerial surveys in Bladen County.



They located the nest in the top of a bald cypress along the Cape Fear River, north of Lock and Dam 1 and east of Hwy. 87, outside of Riegelwood. The discovery is welcome news to biologists because it is definitive proof that this N.C. Wildlife Action Plan priority species is breeding in the state.



“There have been many sightings of the swallow-tailed kite in this same vicinity for several years in the spring and summer so we strongly suspected that they were nesting, but we continued to consider them a ‘probable breeder’ because we lacked evidence of successful breeding,” said John Carpenter, a wildlife diversity biologist with the Commission. “Because swallow-tailed kites nest in remote swamps, it was difficult to find nests during previous surveys.”



David Allen, Wildlife Diversity Program supervisor for the Coastal region and Maria Whitehead from The Nature Conservancy conducted the last swallow-tailed kite survey in June 2008 along the same stretch of the Cape Fear River where the nest from earlier this month was found. While they saw birds defending a territory at the time, they didn’t see any signs of nesting activity — a fact that Allen attributed to the time of year.



“June is late in the season for nesting birds, so finding nests is difficult because the adults are not incubating,” Allen said.



Swallow-tailed kites, one of nine hawk species found in North Carolina, are striking black-and-white birds with a deeply forked tail. They are skillful fliers, hunting from the air and swooping down on unsuspecting prey, which they then eat in mid-air.



According to National Audubon Society, the historic range of breeding swallow-tailed kites once spanned as far north as Minnesota and west through Texas. However, due to habitat loss, they now are found only in fragmented populations in bottomland forests along rivers from North Carolina down to Florida and west to the Louisiana/Texas border. Because they nest almost exclusively in large river swamps, in the tops of trees, biologists typically search for them using helicopters or other fixed-wing aircraft.



In North Carolina, swallow-tailed kites are found mainly along the Cape Fear River during the breeding season, although sightings of the birds have been recorded as far north as Buxton during migration or after the breeding season.



While the bird is not federally listed as endangered or threatened, it is listed as a priority species in North Carolina’s Wildlife Action Plan, which means it is a species that the Wildlife Commission has targeted for conservation actions that biologists hope would preclude the need for federal listing.



Now that a nesting pair has been confirmed, Carpenter and Allen have conducted aerial surveys on other larger river systems in southeastern North Carolina. On May 10, they surveyed the Waccamaw River and part of the Black River by fixed-wing aircraft but did not find additional nests or see any other swallow-tailed kites.



According to Allen, these larger river systems will yield the best chance of finding additional birds.



“The swallow-tailed kite is often referred to as a bird that requires one of the largest home ranges,” Allen said. “In fact, they are not generally found in areas of less than 10,000 acres of bottomland forest. We hope to be able to continue surveying in years to come to locate additional nests and monitor their range expansion.”



The Wildlife Commission’s surveys for swallow-tailed kites and other priority species are supported through donations made to the Nongame and Endangered Wildlife Fund. The public can support this effort as well as other nongame wildlife monitoring, research and management projects in North Carolina by:
__________________
KC a/k/a common KC

Karma - What you send out
Comes right back at ya
KC Foggin is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Sunday 2nd June 2013, 13:28   #2
Hamhed
Registered User
 
Hamhed's Avatar

 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Asheville, North Carolina, USA
Posts: 1,197
Wasn't a Swallow-tailed Kite nest recently found on the ground?

Steve
Hamhed is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2014 2015 2016 2017 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Advertisement
Reply


Thread Tools
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Swallow Tailed Kite in Kansas City? Beach Bum Bird Identification Q&A 17 Tuesday 4th September 2012 15:41
Swallow-tailed Kite!?!?!?!?!? South Carolina, USA Daddylion Bird Identification Q&A 13 Sunday 10th May 2009 11:24
Swallow-tailed Kite OwlTalon Birds Of Prey 3 Tuesday 18th April 2006 00:05
Swallow-tailed Kite in Connecticut streatham Your Birding Day 0 Sunday 17th April 2005 00:16
Swallow Tailed Kite scottishdude Photos of New Species for OPUS 0 Saturday 10th April 2004 18:05



Fatbirder's Top 1000 Birding Websites

Help support BirdForum

Page generated in 0.15432596 seconds with 14 queries
All times are GMT. The time now is 10:00.