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GPS tracking of Brown Pelican in the South Atlantic Bight during cyclonic activity (2017-2018)

Metadata Updated: October 28, 2023

This dataset comprises GPS locations analyzed in Wilkinson et al. (20XX): 14,478 deployed GPS locations, for 32 Eastern brown pelicans tracked during Hurricanes Irma, Florence, and Michael in autumn 2017 and 2018, respectively. Funding for this study was provided by the U.S. Geological Survey Ecosystem Missions Area, and facilitated by Mona Khalil (USGS). Among seabirds, the Eastern brown pelican (Pelecanus occidentalis carolinensis) is a large-bodied coastal species inhabiting nearshore habitats. Breeding on sea islands free of mammalian predators in subtropical and tropical North America, colonies range in size from 10 - 5000 pairs. Egg laying (clutch size of 2-3 typical) occurs primarily in April and May, with each nest producing 1-2 fledglings from July to August. After breeding, adults migrate facultatively, with some individuals remaining near the breeding colony while others disperse much greater distances. The brown pelican is unique in that it captures prey via plunge diving from great heights, where it targets primarily surface-schooling fish. During the post-breeding period in the South Atlantic Bight and elsewhere, adult pelicans are subject to cyclonic activity as hurricanes develop and pass through the region. We deployed 65-g solar GPS Platform Terminal transmitters (GeoTrak, Inc., North Carolina, USA) on adult pelicans from three colonies in coastal South Carolina from 2017-2018. From September - October, transmitters were programmed to record 10 fixes/day (every 90 min from 0700 to 0100 GMT). Transmitters were attached with a backpack harness system composed of Teflon ribbon. Adults were captured at the nest in early-chick rearing or late incubation with a noose pole. Captured pelicans were weighed, measured, banded, and sampled for genetic blood and feathers in addition to tagging. GPS data were visually assessed and outliers removed manually. Data represents only movements recorded during passages of Hurricanes Irma, Florence, and Michael. Data must be processed before analysis.

Access & Use Information

Public: This dataset is intended for public access and use. License: No license information was provided. If this work was prepared by an officer or employee of the United States government as part of that person's official duties it is considered a U.S. Government Work.

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Metadata Created Date June 1, 2023
Metadata Updated Date October 28, 2023

Metadata Source

Harvested from DOI EDI

Additional Metadata

Resource Type Dataset
Metadata Created Date June 1, 2023
Metadata Updated Date October 28, 2023
Publisher U.S. Geological Survey
Identifier USGS:5d7feaaae4b0c4f70d04978f
Data Last Modified 20200817
Category geospatial
Public Access Level public
Bureau Code 010:12
Metadata Context
Metadata Catalog ID
Schema Version
Catalog Describedby
Harvest Object Id 8bfa5acd-29f6-4fab-a6c6-26b7a6da67ed
Harvest Source Id 52bfcc16-6e15-478f-809a-b1bc76f1aeda
Harvest Source Title DOI EDI
Metadata Type geospatial
Old Spatial -82.0,28.5,-75.0,38.0
Publisher Hierarchy White House > U.S. Department of the Interior > U.S. Geological Survey
Source Datajson Identifier True
Source Hash 206e955167b098b91310e1712a5ed9dbea23c9f3e5b12cf5d47c7c8a588eb592
Source Schema Version 1.1
Spatial {"type": "Polygon", "coordinates": -82.0, 28.5, -82.0, 38.0, -75.0, 38.0, -75.0, 28.5, -82.0, 28.5}

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