The Oregon dunes area includes river mouths, estuaries, beaches, forests and, of course dunes which are threatened by different pressures in its environment. The strategic conservation of key habitats is crucial for shorebird survival. Many species, like the western snowy plover (Charadrius nivosus alexandrinus), are declining due to human disturbance and the presence of inland predators who have prospered from human activity.
Human action adversely affects wildlife. Here at the Siuslaw National Forest, the personnel in charge of the dunes and the western snowy plover conservation program put a lot of effort into designing strategies to increase plover populations. These strategies include enclosing the nesting areas, creating activities for the forest visitors, community outreach, and enforcing the law according to endangered species act and federal land policies.
Unfortunately, over the last week while we were monitoring and patrolling plover nesting areas, we experienced that not all visitors and users of important bird areas (IBAs) understand the consequences of violating laws and inadvertently affecting endangered species. I believe our work trying to spread conservation messages to the public will be important to enforce conservation strategies at Siuslaw National Forest.