Overview
Interactions with Renewable Energy
Movement Ecology
Conservation
Bird Aircraft Strike Hazard
Wildlife Toxicology
Education

Project Studies

Here you can find information about the various projects CSG is involved with.

To get started, click one of the tabs above to learn about our projects in that category.

Alternatively, you can view a list of some of our projects by focal species.

Effects of Renewable Energy on Wildlife

Renewable energy development is important to reduce the effects of non-renewable energy on climate change. However, as with any type of human development, there are important ecological concerns.

Chief among these are direct effects on volant wildlife, such as mortality as a result of collision with wind turbine blades or solar panels, and indirect effects such as displacement and habitat destruction and alteration.

CSG conducts research on interactions of wildlife and renewable energy to inform conservation and management.

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Wind Energy and Eagles

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Eastern North America

CSG is working with the Eastern Golden Eagle Working Group to study movements of golden eagles in the Appalachain Mountains. The study began in 2005 when the frist adult bald eagle was trapped. Since 2006, 100 eagles have been telmetered in 12 eastern states. This study examined the overlap between golden eagles and wind energy development, the influence of weather, topography, and experience on migratory movements, and golden eagle habitat use. Learn More

Wyoming

Between 2017 and 2019, 44 golden eagles were tagged in southeast Wyoming with light-weight GPS telemetry. These collected data on time, location, speed, altitude, direction, and activity rate, and were part of a project to model the risk to golden eagles from wind turbines. Wyoming is home to one of the densest populations of breeding golden eagles in the contiguous United States in addition to wintering and interant eagles from out-of-state. Wyoming is also ranked 15th in the nation in wind power capacity, which is expected to increase. This overlap means empirically-based, site-specific models must be developed. Learn More

Oklahoma

We tagged 14 bald eagles in south-central Oklahoma to produce highly detailed data on how and where they fly and use airspace. Analyzing these data in the context of topography, weather, and land cover gives us more of an understanding of what environmental conditions, and what eagle responses to those conditions, may put them at risk from wind turbines. This information should help wildlife managers and energy developers to make sound and scientifically-based decisions relating to the development of wind energy and eagles. Learn More

Kansas

The first bald eagle nest in Kansas was reported in 1989. Since then, the population has grown considerably, with there being 137 nesting pairs as of 2018. At the same time wind energy is being developed in the state, putting bald eagles at risk of collision with turbines as well as from behavioral changes in response to these developments. 10 nestling bald eagles were tagged with light-weight telemetry units to track their movements, understanding them to better inform development of wind energy in the area. Learn More

Movement Ecology

Movement ecology, etc.

Here’s a brief description of what we’re doing and why we’re doing it.

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Movement

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Bald Eagle Upland Area Usage

One of the densest populations of breeding and migratory bald eagles can be found in the Upper Midwest. These eagles use not only riparian areas (areas near lakes and rivers), but also regularly use upland areas away from water. In these more human-dominated environments, eagles encounter threats such as wind turbines, power poles and power lines, vehicles, and carrion contaminated with lead bullet fragments. We tagged 89 bald eagles with light-weight telemetry units in order to study their movements during all life-stages and understand how they are influenced by external factors such as weather and landscape characteristics. Learn More

Golden Eagles in Alaska National Parks

In locations in Alaska including Denali National Park and Preserve, fledgling golden eagles were outfitted with telemetry units to track their movements. This is part of a study to understand the movements of pre-breeding golden eagles in Alaska, including identifying what mechanisms drive this movement, identifying potential anthropogenic threats, quantifying winter and summer space use and movement, and defining natal dispersal. Learn More

Conservation

Conservation is important, etc.

Here’s a brief description of what we’re doing and why we’re doing it.

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Conservation

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Raven Competition with Tortoises

In the deserts of Southern California, populations of common ravens, who nest in human-made structures like billboards and power poles, are increasing. They are also predators of rare and declining wildlife, including the federally threatened population of desert tortoise in the Mojave Desert. Our research is focused on the movement of ravens in order to understand the extent to which they use natural desert areas where desert tortoise may occur. Ultimately, this data will help inform conservation efforts to best conserve desert tortoise through management of raven predation. Learn More

Bird Aircraft Strike Hazard (BASH)

Strike hazard between birds/wildlife and aircraft, also called BASH, etc.

Here’s a brief description of what we’re doing and why we’re doing it.

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Human-Wildlife Interaction

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Black Vultures

Black Vultures are a social species that congregate in groups of up to several hundred using one area, which can cause damage. They pick at synthetic materials like rubber on cars and buildings and asphalt shingles on roofs, their acidic excrement can damage various structures, they attack and kill livestock including piglets and calves, and they can collide with aircraft. Over the past few decades, populations of black vultures have been rapidly increasing and expanding their range in the Eastern United States. We are working to study their movements. Learn More

Bald Eagles

Bald eagle populations in the Chesapeake Bay Region, which had once declined due to pesticides, are now fully recovered. The population has grown so much that eagle-aircraft collisions have become a concern in the area, especially around Marine Corps Base Quantico and Fort A.P. Hill. Nearly 100 bald eagles have been trapped and tagged with telemetry units in Virginia as part of this project. With an understanding of eagle movement, eagle-aircraft strike hazard can be reduced in the region. Learn More

Wildlife Toxicology

Wildlife toxicology, etc.

Here’s a brief description of what we’re doing and why we’re doing it.

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Lead and Wildlife

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Lead Abatement

What strategies can be used to reduce mortalities of bald eagles due to lead poisoning in the Atlantic Flyway? To determine that, first we need an understanding of how lead gets to the eagles in the first place. We will analyze data collected with baited wildlife cameras throughout the Appalachian Mountains used to document scavenging wildlife. Our goal is to use this to quantify exposure rates of bald eagles to lead from carrion. Learn More

Non-lead Ammunition Distribution Programs

Wind energy development has increased substantially in recent years in Wyoming, and wind energy developers are looking to offset golden eagle moralities caused by wind turbines. Lead poisoning is a significant source of golden eagle mortality and the primary cause is thought to be ingestion of lead bullet fragments left over in the offal of harvested game animals. We are distributing non-lead ammunition for free to hunters in southeast Wyoming to determine if non-lead ammunition distribution is a viable way to mitigate wind energy related moralities. Learn More

Education

Community-based research and education, etc.

Here’s a brief description of what we’re doing and why we’re doing it.

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Community

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NJ Costal Barn Owls

In 2020, as a boat was lowered from storage at a marina in Marmora, NJ, a nest full of Barn Owls was discovered. Subsequently, another Barn Owl was found injured by a car near Stone Harbor during the breeding season. These events suggested that low numbers of Barn Owls may be secretly breeding in the coastal marshes of the state and thus the NJ Coastal Barn Owl Project was born to establish a healthy breeding population and educate and engage the public about Barn Owls. Part of this is through working with students to install nest boxes on school grounds, installation of nest cameras, and through direct engagement. Learn More

Community Research and Education

Community, etc.

Here’s a brief description of what we’re doing and why we’re doing it.

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Community

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