Testing the best ways to support birds in rice fields

February 23rd, 2012 · by Garrison Frost

While some of us at Audubon California are sitting at our desks writing blog posts, a good number of our staff are out in the field. the photos below are from our ongoing monitoring of experiments to see how birds respond to varying levels of water left in Central Valley rice fields. Usual practice is to drain the fields completely at the end of January, but we’re working with several farmers to test how birds respond when we leave varying levels of water in the fields, creating artificial wetland habitat. Larger photos below:

A mixed flock of waterfowl including but not limited to Northern Pintail and Northern Shovelers.

Dunlin enjoy the shallow water.

A larger group of Dunlin take off.

(photos by Monica Iglecia)

Categories: Audubon California · Bird Habitat · Landowner Stewardship

2 Comments so far ↓

  • Monica Iglecia

    Hi Sean,

    The surveys are going very well! I have seen a variety of shorebirds using your fields including dunlin, Wilson’s snipe, long-billed curlew, and black- bellied plover. Thank you for your willingness to work with us on this project to enhance the value of rice fields for shorebirds.

  • Sean Doherty

    Monica, how are my fields doing? I hope your finding lots of interesting species.