National Park Service

Northeast Coastal and Barrier Network (NCBN)

Marsh Bird Monitoring

Bird sampling at Fire Island NS
Bird sampling at Fire Island NS

For more information contact: Dana Filippini or
Sara Stevens

Importance / Issues

Salt marsh breeding bird populations (rails, bitterns, sparrows, etc.) in eastern North America are high conservation priorities in need of site specific and regional monitoring designed to detect population changes over time. The present status and trends of these species is unknown, but are thought to be declining, and the majority of these species are listed as conservation priorities on comprehensive wildlife plans throughout the eastern US. NCBN parks are known to provide important salt marsh habitat to these species.

Parks to Be Monitored

  • Assateague National Seashore (ASIS)
  • Colonial National Historic Park (COLO)
  • Fire Island National Seashore (FIIS)
  • Gateway National Recreation Area (GATE)
  • George Washington Birthplace National Monument (GEWA)
  • Sagamore Hill National Historic Site (SAHI)
  • Thomas Stone National Historic Site (THST)

Preliminary Monitoring Objectives

  • Monitoring objectives for each NCBN Park and groups of tidal marsh bird species are in the process of being determined.

Protocol Development & Status

The Network has established a cooperative agreement with the University of Delaware to explore the possibility of incorporating Network parks into the NABCI Bird Conservation Region (BCR) 30 tidal marsh bird monitoring program, a regionally based long term marsh bird monitoring effort developed through extended partnerships with other agencies, states, and Universities.


Specific measures have yet to be determined.

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Last Updated: December 30, 2016 Contact Webmaster