Each year, the red knot, a medium-sized shorebird, makes a 20,000-mile round-trip from the southern tip of Argentina to the Artic Circle – one of the longest migrations of any bird. And each year from April to June, the red knot stops over in the Delaware Bay to feed on horseshoe crab eggs resulting from the largest spawning of horseshoe crabs found on the East Coast of the United States.
Researchers from Virginia Tech and the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife have documented a reduction in the number of red knot birds throughout the Delaware Bay tied to a decline in horseshoe crabs.
The research will be reported in The Journal of Wildlife Management, in the article, "Horseshoe Crab Eggs Determine Red Knot Distribution in Delaware Bay Habitats," by Virginia Tech fisheries and wildlife research scientist Sarah Karpanty, professor Jim Fraser, and associate professor Jim Berkson, New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife biologists Lawrence Niles and Amanda Dey, and Virginia Tech statistics professor Eric Smith. The article provides scientifically defensible information for wildlife management officials as well as for other members of the scientific community.
Lynn Davis | EurekAlert!
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