New York Natural Heritage Program
Black Skimmer
Rynchops niger Linnaeus, 1758
Birds

Threats [-]
Loss of suitable nesting and foraging habitat due to development, recreation, and erosion pose the greatest threat to the Black Skimmer. During the nesting season, the birds are often subject to disturbances such as beach grooming, recreation, vandalism, and predation by cats, crows, gulls, fox, and raccoons. These disturbances may cause nest abandonment and reduce productivity (Gochfeld and Burger 1994; Rosenblatt 2006; McGowen and Corwin 2008).

Conservation Strategies and Management Practices [-]
Continue to protect nesting and foraging areas by installing fencing, posting interpretive signs, performing yearly surveying and monitoring, conducting educational programs, and controlling predators. Work with landowners to participate in management activities. Habitat restoration practices such as removing vegetation from areas that are overgrown and depositing dredge spoil to replenish eroded beaches should be continued. Continue to develop and conduct management and habitat restoration plans along with state, local, and federal partners. Encourage beach maintenance activities to be conducted before or after nesting season. If possible, areas where birds are known to be nesting should be closed off until chicks have fledged. Encourage beach-goers with dogs to comply with the local Leash Laws (Gochfeld and Burger 1994; Rosenblatt 2006; McGowen and Corwin 2008).

Research Needs [-]
More research regarding life history, survivorship, breeding, behavior, and habitat requirements at breeding and foraging grounds is needed (Gochfeld and Burger 1994; Rosenblatt 2006).