Article published Dec 5, 2001 – Erie Times-News
by John Bartlett, Staff Writer
The National Audubon Society thinks Presque Isle is not just of state and national significance as a bird area, but of global significance as well.
Presque Isle, in Lake Erie near Erie, PA, is among five sites in the state the National Audubon Society nominated for designation as a globally significant “important bird area,” national Audubon spokeswoman Kara Grobert said.
Elevating Presque Isle’s status from a state important bird area to one with global significance can only increase awareness of and interest in Presque Isle, said Susan A. Smith, a local birder and owner of Feather Quest, a company that offers birding lectures, classes, tours and field trips.
To be designated a globally important bird area, a site is first nominated and then evaluated by a team of ornithologists and other scientists to determine its significance to birds on a worldwide scale. The team bases its decision on scientific standards established by BirdLife International, Grobert said.
Important bird areas are those areas that provide critical habitat, are important migration stopover points, support exceptionally high numbers of birds or threatened or endangered species, and are considered important to the future of bird species.
About 325 different species of birds have been identified on Presque Isle, said Steven Hoffman, director of Bird Conservation for the Pennsylvania Audubon Society.
John Bartlett can be reached at (814)-724-6979. Send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
[Excerpt reprinted with permission of Times Publishing Company, Erie, PA. Copyright 2002]