British Columbia Coastal Disturbance Project

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This program is no longer running, but please view our other programs to learn how you can help monitor BC's coast.

British Columbia's coastal environments are popular places, for humans and for birds! BC's shorelines provide a great playground for people and recreational activities. They also provide crucial habitat for numerous species of loons, grebes, cormorants, herons, waterfowl, shorebirds, gulls, terns, and alcids. Unfortunately, recreational activities can unintentionally disturb birds by interrupting important feeding, resting, and breeding behaviour.

Recreational disturbance has been identified as a threat to coastal waterbirds and a factor contributing to declining waterbird populations. In an effort to improve our understanding of the impacts of disturbance to coastal waterbirds, Bird Studies Canada launched this monitoring program to identify recreational activities that pose the greatest risk to coastal waterbirds. With the information that was collected from this project, Bird Studies Canada hopes to design and implement a Community Based Social Marketing approach and conduct outreach activities to increase awareness and foster behavioral change.


Glaucous-winged Gulls. Photo:  Catherine Jardine

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Pacific Coast. Photo: Catherine Jardine

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Brant. Photo: Catherine Jardine

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