British Columbia's shorelines are popular places, and for good reason! People use them for a range of recreational activities, from dog walking to paddle boarding. However, when these activities overlap with critical habitats for coastal waterbirds, bird populations may suffer.
Many of BC's coastal bird species are declining. Shorebird numbers have declined by almost half since 1973, and disturbance from recreational users has been identified as a concern.
Bird Studies Canada launched this three-year project in 2015 to reduce recreational disturbance to coastal waterbirds in BC. We worked with Citizen Scientists to identify recreational activities that pose the greatest risk to shorebirds. We also developed a community-based social marketing approach, and conducted outreach activities to increase awareness and foster behavioural change.
The BC Coastal Disturbance Project is a program of Bird Studies Canada in collaboration with partners, supporters, and volunteers.