Statewide Survey

A major component of efforts to monitor trends in the distribution and abundance of tricolors is the Triennial Statewide Survey. The statewide survey was pioneered by Ted Beedy and Bill Hamilton in the 1980’s as a means to obtain an estimate of the number of tricolors throughout California. The statewide survey, which typically occurs in mid-to-late April, is a volunteer effort with participants from all over lower elevation regions of California and is directed by a statewide coordinator. The statewide survey occurs every 3 years and documents both presence and absence, along with an estimate of the number of tricolors and characteristics of occupied sites. The statewide survey provides current, reliable information on the numbers and distribution of tricolored blackbirds throughout California and a means to document trends in the population over time and complements more intensive field efforts that provide insights into the factors causing observed population increases or declines.