Sediment Transport by Mud-Nesting Barn Swallows in White Sands National Monument, New Mexico.
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The effects of avian nest building on the landscape are not well-known. Birds can create and modify their landscape, and this is seen in nesting behaviors. Some birds will transport mud to build nests and depending on the sensitivity of the landscape, the effects can be widespread. This research quantified the mass of sediment transported by the Barn Swallow in the desert environment of White Sands National Monument, New Mexico and identified resources provided by humans that may aide in their residence in this unlikely area. This knowledge will supply a better insight to the human mitigated geomorphic impact of avian nest building and can help in future management for desert- dwelling species.