Southern Alberta drier than last year

Written by Jim Bredy
Thursday, May 14, 2009

Jim BredyWe finished our 5th day of flying today. We have flown most of the area between the US border and Red Deer, Alberta. Overall, the wetland and habitat conditions in our area are wetter in the west, when compared to the central and eastern portions. This is typical from what has been observed in the past.

My observer Dave Fronczak was on this survey last year and states that overall, the habitat conditions appear to have deteriorated this year. We even noticed that some of the larger wetlands are drying up into alkaline flats. We have seen a good variety of birds. Due to the dry conditions, they have been concentrating on the remaining wetlands. We hope to have another update available by May 25.

FWS Partenavia aircraft flying the May Waterfowl BPOP survey. Walsh Air Ground near Medicine Hat, Alberta. Photo by Garnet Raven (CWS).

Poor wetland and upland habitat conditions near Suffield, Alberta.  Photo by Dave Fronczak (FWS).

Good wetland conditions with little to no associated upland habitat. 15 miles SW of Calgary, Alberta. Photo by Dave Fronczak (FWS).

Good wetland and habitat conditions approximately 20 miles NW of Calgary, Alberta. Photo by Jim Bredy (FWS).