ABS 2022
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Urbanization and its effects on the colonial behaviors of Cliff Swallows
Jamie M. Casseus. Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ, United States

Human activities have had numerous impacts on the health and viability of wild organisms, including direct and indirect effects on many behaviors. However, despite clear and strong social consequences for humans in cities, we know comparatively less about how rapid urbanization has shaped and is shaping the interactive and social behaviors of many urban-dwelling groups of wild animals. Colonially living vertebrate species are rare in cities, but where they do exist they provide an intriguing study subject for examining urban impacts on, for example, group size and membership, individual-level interactions, etc. We will study variation in colony size, membership, and individual behavior in cliff swallows (Petrochelidon pyrrhonota) in relation to human and urban activities in the Phoenix metropolitan area. During the spring of 2022-2025, we will use eBird data to select colonies of various sizes and monitor group composition and dynamics, breeding output and behaviors, and long-term colony viability. Using satellite imagery, provided by CAP LTER we will quantify various forms of urban land-use, land-cover, and development and relate these to swallow colony dynamics and behaviors.