Oystercatchers see strength in numbers

Written by Vineyard Gazette

A coalition of 35 conservation groups formed five years ago to protect habitat and aid recovery. © Myer Bornstein

A coalition of 35 conservation groups formed five years ago to protect habitat and aid recovery. © Myer Bornstein

The American oystercatcher population is recovering following a decline documented a decade ago, a Cape Cod science center said.

A comprehensive aerial survey of the oystercatcher population done last year from Long Island to the Mexico border found the population had increased steadily since 2009.

A coalition of 35 conservation groups formed five years ago to protect habitat and aid recovery. — Lanny McDowell
Ten years ago the harlequin-colored shorebirds were in a decline. Habitat loss and human encroachment were blamed. A survey that year showed there were about 10,900 oystercatchers and that the population was dwindling. In 2009 a coalition of 35 groups from Canada to Texas formed to protect the birds, calling itself the American Oystercatcher Working Group.

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