Integrated Monitoring in Bird Conservation Regions eNewsletter
Winter 2020

Welcome to the sixth IMBCR e-newsletter!
With this outlet, we will showcase IMBCR data applications for management and conservation efforts, highlight the many partners and faces that make IMBCR possible, and provide updates and outreach materials. Please forward the newsletter to any interested colleagues who might find the material useful. If you have examples you would like to share using IMBCR data or would like to get involved in this monitoring effort, please contact Jen!

´╗┐Integrated Monitoring in Bird Conservation Regions (IMBCR) is a breeding landbird monitoring program that spans the Great Plains to the Intermountain West. A nested, probabilistic sampling design allows us to make inference about bird populations at multiple scales across public and private lands. Click here for more information about the program including the IMBCR vision and mission statement.
IMBCR Announcements

Now that the field season for 2020 is completed and the data have been entered and proofed, the analysis stage has begun. Look for density, abundance, occupancy, and trend estimates for 270+ species early next year. We will email the listserv when 2020 estimates have been added to the Rocky Mountain Avian Data Center and will soon start on the 2020 Field Season report.

It's almost time for the 2021 IMBCR Partners meeting! The meeting will be virtual this year: 1/20 & 1/21 from 1-4 pm (MST) both days. We will have two largely interactive sessions: the first session will be aimed at discussing field implementation questions and concerns, and the second session will focus on identifying funding partner needs related to IMBCR resources, data applications, and communication opportunities. Please email Jen feedback to help ensure meeting topics are relevant!
IMBCR Partner Spotlight

´╗┐Walter Wehtje, Director
Ricketts Conservation Foundation

I learned about the IMBCR program when working for Bird Conservancy of the Rockies in 2017. I was impressed by the scope of the work, the quality of the data collected, and the ability to apply the results to a variety of ecological and management questions.
Putting the Data to Work

In 2018 I started a new position as the director of the Ricketts Conservation Foundation in western Wyoming. I learned about a nearby aspen regeneration project and realized that using an IMBCR overlay (contracting with BCR to conduct surveys within the study area) was an excellent way to gather data that could be used to understand how forest thinning and prescribed fires would affect the local avian community.

Working with the Bird Conservancy, Bridger-Teton National Forest, and Wyoming Game and Fish Department, we have now completed our third year of monitoring. Our goal is to continue monitoring the effects of the 11,400-acre Monument Ridge project with the hope that our findings can help inform future forest management actions in the intermountain West.
Click here to listen to Walter's presentation on the Monument Ridge project or click here to read a recent report.
The Monument Ridge project area in northwestern Wyoming from Van Lanen 2019.
Want to learn how you can answer a management question, evaluate conservation efforts, increase sampling intensity in your management unit, or contribute to the IMBCR monitoring effort? Listen to Matthew McLaren, the IMBCR coordinator, discuss how to get involved in this presentation.
Applying the Data
Two recent publications included IMBCR data to address the effects of disturbance and conservation efforts on bird populations. Will Janousek and Victoria Dreitz assessed the relationship between species richness and fire across the Rocky Mountain region and included gradients of ecosystem productivity. They found that the relationship between species richness and fire severity only changed considerably when including the interaction of fire and ecosystem productivity. Read the publication here.

Nicole Michel and co-authors developed the BirdÔÇÉFriendliness Index (BFI) for the Northern Great Plains (NGP) to evaluate grassland and aridland bird community response to habitat management, and identify ecologically significant areas for these birds. BFI values were highest in Alberta, Saskatchewan, and North Dakota compared to the southwestern region of the NGP. Results suggested that bird-friendly habitat management practices should increase BFI values, and thus, bird abundance. Read the publication here.
We recently hosted a webinar to go over the steps for extracting population estimates and occurrence information from the Rocky Mountain Avian Data Center for an environmental assessment. The webinar was geared towards our federal agency partners with examples for a Wyoming BLM Field Office. Download the webinar here.

We also wrote a blog for the Partners in Flight 30th anniversary series highlighting the BLM and how birds connect the world. The blog highlights the BLM's involvement in the IMBCR program and how biologists use the monitoring information to complete environmental assessments and ask targeted management questions.

Visit the IMBCR website for IMBCR-related resources like publications, factsheets, trend estimates, the annual report, and past partners meeting presentations. We also have a spreadsheet documenting overlay projects and additional analyses, and a spreadsheet for all IMBCR data requests.
Stay in touch!
Contact Jen Timmer ( with questions, example applications of IMBCR data, pictures, or any other contributing material for future IMBCR e-newsletters.