Maddie Ybarra


Maddie will be investigating the physiological responses to native perennial cover for two grassland bird species, Grasshopper Sparrow (Ammodramus savannarum) and Savannah Sparrow (Passerculus sandwichensis). Specifically, she will use leukocytes (white blood cells) and body condition to assess whether a higher percentage of native perennials infers higher quality habitat. Previous research shows that rangeland practices such as range seeding and managed livestock grazing promote native perennial growth within grasslands, but further research needs to be completed to assess how habitat quality is affected for these grassland birds. Maddie will be working on ranches in San Mateo County that are part of Point Blue Conservation Science’s Rangeland Monitoring Network to help quantify the effect of rangeland practices on grassland birds.