HARC has partnered with Houston Audubon, National Fish & Wildlife Foundation, American Bird Conservancy, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, and Cornell Lab of Ornithology to create the Houston Gulf Coast Area (HGCA) State of the Birds StoryMap.
The upper Texas coast is vitally important for more than 500 diverse bird species. The HGCA State of the Birds StoryMap brings together data on land use, land cover types, and bird population trends to identify priorities for conservation and restoration activities for the Houston-Galveston region. It allows users to interact with bird trends data and the underlying land and habitat conditions that are impacting birds in the region. By bringing this data together, the StoryMap aims to provide interested stakeholders with a better understanding of the overall health of the bird population in the Houston Gulf Coast Area.
The StoryMap profiles six bird species that call the Houston Gulf Coast home: the Eastern Meadowlark, Eastern Bluebird, Northern Cardinal, Carolina Chickadee, Great Egret, and Wilson’s Plover. Each bird profile includes an image and description of the bird, an audio of the bird chirping, its current status, actions that can be taken to support the bird, and resources for additional information. The six species represent a suite of comparable birds that are facing similar challenges and require the actions listed in the StoryMap to ensure their long-term survival in the greater Houston-Galveston region.
Overall, it is hoped that this StoryMap will be a useful educational tool to help more audiences be aware of and learn more about these regional bird species. At the same time, it aims to create more opportunities for bird and land conservation organizations to engage in and discuss the connections between birds and land use, and therefore, lead to improved conditions for birds and local communities.
To read the Houston Gulf Coast Area State of the Birds StoryMap, click here.