Integrative Statistical Modeling and Predictive Mapping of Seabird Distribution and Abundance on the Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf

U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management
National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration National Ocean Service National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science
Experience from offshore wind development in Europe suggests that siting of facilities is an important consideration for minimizing impacts to bird species. Discussions during the FWS Marine Bird Science and Offshore Wind Workshop and the BOEM Atlantic Wind Energy Workshop in 2011 emphasized the importance of identifying bird “hot spots” and “cold spots.” BOEM is funding a study by USGS to create maps of predicted distributions for dozens of seabird species on the mid-Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf (OCS). This effort will create maps that span the entire Atlantic OCS, update the mid-Atlantic maps, and develop a process for updating the maps as new data becomes available. This study will incorporate all available science-quality seabird survey data (including data derived from ships, planes, telemetry, and other emerging platforms) into high resolution predictive maps of seabird occurrence and abundance along the Atlantic OCS. The objective of this study is to provide easily understandable information about the distribution of birds to aid offshore wind development siting decisions and reduce the risk of impacts to birds.
Publication Date: 
Wednesday, May 1, 2013
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