April Wrack Line Newsletter

April cover photos. Two least terns. Photo by Jean Hall.

Bird Stewardship Training:

April 4: Panhandle Partnership. 6pm. Register here

April 7: Timucuan Partnership. Email Chris Farrell.

April 19: Sarasota County. 7pm. Register here

April 25: Three Rooker Island. 7pm. Register here

April 26: Pinellas County. 7pm. Register here.


April 15 - 21 is the April count window for the Breeding Bird Protocol.  Whenever possible, weekly surveys are preferred for routes with active nesting. Weekly surveys help capture information about peak counts. 

FSA News

Black skimmer chick photo by Britt Brown

Imperiled Beach-nesting Bird Permitted Monitor Training Coming Soon

In 2022, the FWC approved new Species Conservation Measures and Permitting Guidelines (Guidelines) for four species of imperiled beach-nesting birds (IBNB). The Guidelines will take effect September 2023. Guidelines clarify protections for the species, provide options for avoiding impacts, and provide information on permitting, including minimization and mitigation options, when impacts are unavoidable. The FWC launched an IBNB Guidelines webpage to help the public navigate the IBNB Guidelines.

To support guideline implementation, the FWC is in the final stages of developing training resources for those interested in becoming IBNB Permitted Monitors. IBNB Permitted Monitors are qualified to assist FWC Incidental Take Permittees by minimizing and avoiding harm or harassment of imperiled beach-nesting birds during project activities. Training resources are expected to be available on the IBNB Permitted Monitor page at the beginning of May. For more information on becoming an IBNB Permitted Monitor and to gain survey experience with skilled bird monitors in the Florida Shorebird Alliance partner network, please visit the IBNB Permitted Monitor page. 

Photo: Britt Brown

47th Annual Waterbird Society Meeting October 9-13, 2023

Waterbird Society Annual Meeting

The 47th Annual Meeting of the Waterbird Society will be held in Fort Lauderdale, Florida the week of October 9 – 12, 2023. Meeting details will be updated on the Waterbird Society's website.

The Local Committee and Scientific Program Committee is planning a robust meeting full of engaging plenaries, presentations, training workshops and events for students and activities that promote diversity and inclusion, and exciting field trips.

If you are interested in organizing a symposium, workshop or special session during the meeting, please contact Michelle Peterson by April 15, 2023.

FSD banner

FSD Updates

Florida Shorebird Database Webinars and Resources

The 2023 Florida Shorebird Database (FSD) webinar recordings are now available online! The webinars walk you through how to survey rooftops and routes using the Breeding Bird Protocol and how to enter data into the FSD. Click the links below or visit the Resources tab on the FSD website to view the recordings.

New Route Surveyors Webinar

Returning Route Surveyors Webinar

Rooftop Monitors Webinar

The webinars reference several great resources that you can find on the Florida Shorebird Alliance (FSA) and FSD websites. Below are examples of some of the great resources available to you!

On the FSD’s Resource tab, find links to the 2023 webinars, datasheets, tutorials and quick guides for entering data, and the survey count window dates.

The FSA’s Monitoring Guidance page contains chick aging guidance documents for some of the common species nesting in the state. New this year is the American oystercatcher chick guide! Also check out the Timing of Ground Nesting and Flightless Chicks to see what time of year you can expect to start to seeing chicks. It can be tricky to identify if black skimmers are scraping or if they have nests. Learn more about the nesting behaviors for this species by checking out the Guide to Black Skimmer Nesting and Courtship Behaviors.

Finally, on FSA’s Outreach Materials page download educational materials about Florida’s shorebirds and seabirds including shorebird-themed craft ideas for kids, species fact sheets, and brochures on how everyone can help to share the beach with nesting birds!

Ebb Tidings

2023 Florida WildQuest Logo

The FWC Hosts Annual Florida WildQuest Event

Join the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) for Florida WildQuest 2023. Florida residents and visitors are encouraged to grab their phones and go on a wild adventure to complete scavenger hunt missions and discover some of Florida’s best spots to see wildlife and enjoy the outdoors. This year’s event will take place on Florida’s Wildlife Management Areas across the state April 28–May 7. Qualifying players will be entered in a random drawing to win wilderness-inspired prizes.

Full details on how to participate can be found on the Florida WildQuest website.