In this webinar, Rachel Darvill speaks about the five different marsh bird species that we can find in the Columbia Basin that are often lumped as “grebe spp.” She explains how to tell the difference between grebes in the field (both in breeding and non-breeding plumage), where we can typically find them, what kinds of habitats they use and require, as well as the listed status that three of five grebe species have.
Rachel has been working on bird research projects in the Columbia Wetlands for the past five years. She will speak to some of the results of her projects as they relate to grebes, and describe how marsh birds can be important biological indicators of healthy wetland systems and how grebes may be useful in designating the Columbia Wetlands into the Important Bird and Biodiversity Area (IBA) program. Some recommendations for what can be done to conserve these birds in the Columbia Valley into the future will be provided, including ideas for wetland conservation and restoration.
Rachel is a Registered Professional Biologist and principal consultant of Goldeneye Ecological Services. She has been working on wildlife research and conservation projects for more than two decades. Most recently she developed and managed two multi-year bird research projects in the Columbia Wetlands, the Columbia Wetlands Waterbird Survey (CWWS) and the Columbia Wetlands Marsh Bird Monitoring Project, both of which have recently concluded. Some of her past bird work includes research on common ravens using radio telemetry in both the Alaskan Arctic and Washington State, working at a banding station on Triangle Island (largest seabird colony in western Canada), along with assessing seabird food habits and conducting chick growth measurements on Triangle and on ecological reserves on Gwaii Haanas National Park. She has also worked on numerous other wildlife projects including gray whale research on BCs West Coast, and on grizzly bear projects in Banff National Park and in Haines, Alaska. Rachel currently sits on the board of the Columbia Wetlands Stewardship Partners and Wildsight Golden, and is currently working on research projects leading towards conservation outcomes in the Columbia Valley.