Kansas Breeding Bird Atlas (KBBAT)

Upland plover
The Kansas Ornithological Society initiated the Kansas Breeding Bird Atlas project during 1990 for the purpose of developing a series of distributional maps for all species of birds breeding within the state. This atlas would be a companion volume to Thompson and Ely: Birds in Kansas Vol. 1 (1989) and Vol. 2 (1992). Conversations with the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks regarding the suitability of such a project for funding by the non-game wildlife program (Chickadee Checkoff) led to the submission of a proposal for initial year funds through the Kansas Biological Survey, Lawrence by Bill Busby and John Zimmerman to the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks, with contributing support from the Kansas Biological Survey, Kansas State University, and later, the Kansas Ornithological Society. Data collection began in 1992 with a proposed completion date at the end of 1997. Resources available at this site include a map of the distribution of all atlas blocks in the state and a tabulation of "safe dates" (safe dates page currently unavailable) for possible or probable breeding species in the state.

This survey will provide basic information on the current breeding status of birds throughout the state. These data not only have intrinsic value regarding the distribution of our avifauna, they have practical import in their use for the assessment of ecological impacts resulting from proposed projects for industrial, commercial, and agricultural purposes, as well as facilitating the determination of the population status of species considered for listing as threatened or endangered within the state. Using the current atlas as a baseline, subsequent atlasing projects on a proposed interval of 25 years will document change in bird populations in correlation with longer term changes in the environment, for example, global warming.

 Kansas is not alone in attempting to develop a breeding-bird atlas. Some state and provincial atlases have already been published, for example, New York, Ontario, Ohio, Michigan, and Vermont. Atlasing efforts are complete or nearing completion in the neighboring states of Nebraska, Missouri, Oklahoma and Colorado. Some of these results can even be found on the World Wide Web! So far the most amazing effort has to be the Kentucky Breeding Bird Atlas! Check it out.

And order your KBBAT volume here.

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