Discipline: Ecology Environmental and Earth Sciences
Ebony Gaillard - Spelman College
As the world continues to move towards operating on a global scale and countries become increasingly modernized and industrialized, how land is used is rapidly changing. Modernization and industrialization are often accompanied by urbanization and building on previously undeveloped land. Biodiversity is essential to the maintenance of local ecosystems, and urbanization can have dramatic effects on the abundance and types of biota that live in an area. Changes in local ecosystems can result in alterations in the population densities of animal and plant species by affecting resource availability, including the availability of food and shelter. We are interested in determining the effect that urbanization has on bird biodiversity over time. Using publicly available data collected by the citizen science program eBird, we have calculated bird biodiversity measurements for multiple locations in Florida spanning a 10 year period. We then calculated changes in land use and urbanization in those same locations over the same 10 year period. We predict that areas with increased urbanization will also have a decrease in bird biodiversity.
Funder Acknowledgement(s): Funding for this research was provided by the Sherman Fairchild Foundation SURP Funding Number: 47145-4671.
Faculty Advisor: Jennifer Kovacs, firstname.lastname@example.org
Role: I participated in the data analysis portion of my research, which includes collecting the bird sighting data from eBird, grouping together sites in the state of Florida to study, calculating the bird biodiversity in these locations and calculating changes in land use and urbanization over a ten year timespan by using the program ArcGIS.