Eastern Shore Islands, NS
Waterbird research, especially on American (Common) Eiders (Somateria mollissima dresseri) has been conducted at the Eastern Shore Islands (ESI) for decades, and the site is a provincial Wildlife Management Area. Our research, in collaboration with the Nova Scotia Department of Natural Resources, has focused principally on determining factors that may have led to declines in local breeding populations of these ducks. In particular, we are examining habitat change on islands, from loss of forest to increases in shrubs, as well as apparent increases in predators on the islands, both mammals (mink and otters) and birds (eagles). Recent research has also tracked the foraging movements of Leach's Storm-petrels (Oceanodroma leucorhoa) from ESI breeding sites, and diet and movement of trace elements through the marine food web in this region.