A number of Manitoba’s smallest feathered friends go virtually unnoticed. Nevertheless, these little birds are important for the diversity within our wildlife biome.
Coordinator for Manitoba Important Bird Areas Tim Poole explains that Funds from Tundra Oil & Gas will assist the program in coordinating outreach and monitoring activities across three IBAs in southern Manitoba (Oak Lake and Plum Lakes IBA, Whitewater Lake IBA and Southwestern Manitoba Mixed-grass Prairie IBA).
“Activities will include workshops, presentations, coordinated bird monitoring events and targeted landowner outreach,” says Poole. “These IBAs are significant for threatened grassland birds, including Sprague's Pipit, Chestnut-collared Longspur and Loggerhead Shrike, declining shorebirds which stop in wetlands to feed as they travel huge distances to breed in the High Arctic and wetland birds such as Western Grebe.”
Their birdsongs, the food chain they are a part of (both as feeders and prey), and other aspects of wildlife interaction may go unnoticed and under-appreciated. These birds are an integral characteristic of the Manitoba prairie.