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Cuyahoga Valley National Park Birds

Cuyahoga Valley National Park's diverse landscape provides habitat for 194 species of birds, 105 of which breed in the park. A total of 15 of these species are "of concern" for conservation (either listed as federally or state-endangered). The park provides important habitat for such species.

Songbirds are found in Cuyahoga Valley National Park throughout the year, though large numbers migrate through the area in spring and fall. To learn more about these songbirds, researchers are currently performing two studies. A study of the relative abundance of forest songbirds and their specific habitat requirements within the park is underway. Another study focuses on the potential value of electric utility corridors for migrating songbirds.

The park's riverine and wetland habitats support many different bird species. Great blue herons, not known to nest in the park before the 1980s, now raise young in two heronries within or adjacent to the park boundary. Starting in April, visitors can observe herons carting sticks to repair or build nests at two sites along the Cuyahoga River north of Route 82 and just south of Bath Road . Heron nest monitoring has found hundreds of nests perched high above the river and filled with squawking, awkward young from May to July. Wood ducks , Canada geese, and other waterfowl are found throughout the park.

Ten raptors are either summer or year-round residents of the Cuyahoga Valley . Hawk and owl nests have been monitored annually since 1993 to collect data on habitat, seasonal nesting periods, and reproductive success of known and newly reported nests. From 1996 to 1999, raptors were surveyed using broadcast calling techniques to determine distribution and relative abundance and to locate more nest sites. The survey found that turkey vulture, red-tailed hawk, and red-shouldered hawk species were the most abundant and widely distributed raptors in the area.

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