Insect Availability for Swallow-tailed Kites (Elanoides forficatus) in Four Human-managed Habitats in the Coastal Plain of South Carolina
Baird, Tera Keeler
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Swallow-tailed Kites (Elanoides forficatus) utilize a mosaic of forested wetlands and open habitats during the breeding season. Current habitat conservation objectives for breeding Swallow-tailed Kites are limited to forested wetlands despite the overwhelming evidence that open habitats are used for foraging to meet daily and seasonal energy needs. This research analyzes the insect resources available to Swallow-tailed Kites in four human managed landscapes: crop, pasture, managed wetlands, and fallow fields across the coastal plain of South Carolina. By determining resource availability in certain human-managed landscapes, we will better understand the temporal and spatial distribution of prey. This information is important for both conservation planning and the resource management for the species.