Tuesday, March 07, 2006



Very rough (and generous) totals of the potential habitat for each state (in square miles). These are just eyeballed from the maps, please do not get me in trouble by citing them as actual firm numbers!

TX: 500
AR: 1500
LA: 2000
TN: 300
MS: 700
AL: 500
FL: 2500
GA: 1000
SC: 1500

All states pooled: about 10,000 square miles

General areas that have 300 square miles or more of habitat that is interconnected or at least close together:

Ouachita-Saline (1000 sq. miles)
Big Cypress (800)
Atchafalaya (700)
Winyah Bay basin (700)
Appalachee Bay - Suwannee (600)
Big Woods (500)
Mobile-Black Warrior-Alabama (500)
Altamaha basin (500)
Pearl (400)
Congaree-Santee (400)
Appalachicola (300)

A couple of interesting things... Most (though not quite all) of the primo-suspected Ivorybill areas are on this list. One might infer from this that it takes an area including about 300 square miles of fairly continuous swampland to support the species. This would include a lot of secondary habitat. This would not mean that it takes this much for an individual bird; but it might imply that it takes this much to support the species so it can persist year-to-year in the area. Very speculative, I am the first to admit. Again please do not get me in trouble by citing this as though it were "Fact from an Expert!"

Also rather important -- nearly half of these areas have received little if any attention. Two of the top four may have never been "searched" at all.


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