Effects on Common Nighthawk

Proponent

Shannon Powell Consulting

Contract

2017-18-30

Amount Awarded

$9,150

Final Report

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Common Nighthawk (Chordeiles minor) was designated as a threatened species by COSEWIC in 2007. The city of Whitehorse has almost completed the designation of the Chadburn Lake Park, the selected study area. This newly established park has seen a significant rise in mountain bike activity in recent years. Common Nighthawks use the same habitat that these trails are being established, due to the nature of the forest and the ease of trail development, and their scenic values. The Nighthawk is a ground nester, which make then vulnerable during breeding season when the trails become snow free and mountain bikers flock to these areas. My project will use a control/impact study design in two areas of the new park. One area is highly fragmented by biking trails and has high and consistent use of mountain bikers. The other area has low density of trails and human use. These two areas will be assessed for the presence and absence of Common Nighthawk during the breeding period. Once the study is completed and analyzed we will be able to assess potential impact of human use of suitable habitat on Common Nighthawk and if further study is required to draw conclusions on unintended anthropogenic effects on this Threatened species in breeding habitats.