Meeting Abstract

90-3  Saturday, Jan. 6 10:30 - 10:45  City Traits as Predictors of Avian Diversity and Life History Traits KINNUNEN, RP*; SCHMIDT, C; GARROWAY, CJ; University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Canada; University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Canada; University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Canada

Given the increasing pace of urbanization globally, conservation managers and ecologists need to learn about the responses of animal populations to features of cities if measures to conserve biodiversity are to be successful. We cannot study the responses of all species to urbanization- however, shared life history traits of successful urban species will give insight into how species might be affected by urbanization in general. Our goal was to link urban avian biodiversity and species life history traits to the features of cities within which they occur. To do this we first quantified the diversity of urban birds (Christmas Bird Counts) and their life history traits (e.g., body mass, clutch size). We then used spatially explicit modelling to ask which geographic and socioeconomic features of cities (20 cities with population size > 500.000) in the U.S. and Canada predicted biodiversity and life history traits. By identifying links between city features and the diversity and life history traits of those doing well in cities, we will be better able to predict the consequences of continued urban expansion. Our analyses will provide much needed information about the impacts of human disturbance on biodiversity and provide insight into the life history traits that foster persistence after rapid environmental changes.