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Bird Migration

by Peter Thompson

The Main Idea


This experiment will explore whether migratory
birds are arriving later or earlier than the usual
period. The week of arrival is the first week
when the birds frequency is over 0.1.
We will use frequency from a specific website to
determine this. Frequency is the percent chance
that a bird is seen on any given day in an area.
We will compare the first week of arrival in the
non-2014 data with the same week in 2014
We will use 13 migratory bird species.

Hypothesis
Due to the long, cold winter, birds will
arrive later because it is harder to
begin migration at the same time this
year
This will be carried out using a
significance test comparing the
frequencies of birds in a the week of
their arrival in 2014 with the
frequencies of the same week in every
other year

The Statistics Behind It


We will be carrying out a significance
test using one proportion, or a
probability.
Our test statistic will be z since that is
the only one used in proportions
Since the sample size is varied by each
week the size will be different
Using an value of .05 we will
compare the p-value derived from the
test to
We will be using data from Tolland

The Birds
Ruby-throated
Hummingbird
Eastern Phoebe
Tree Swallow
House Wren
Veery
Wood Thrush
Gray Catbird
Ovenbird

Black-and-white
Warbler
Common
Yellowthroat
Yellow Warbler
Chipping Sparrow
Rose-breasted
Grosbeak
Brown-headed
Cowbird
Baltimore Oriole

Ruby-throated Hummingbird
Arochilus colubris

2014 Arrival
Week: 17
Non-2014 Week:
17
Since they arrive
at the same week
we cannot make
any conclusions
about the birds
frequency

Eastern Phoebe
Sayornis phoebe
2014 Arrival Week:
13
Non-2014 Week: 12
2014 Week 12
Frequency: .0000
Non-2014 Week 12
Frequency: .1592
The p-value is .0007
so we can conclude
significance

Tree Swallow
Tachycineta bicolor
2014 Arrival Week:
17
Non-2014 Week: 14
2014 Week 14
Frequency: .0577
Non-2014 Week 14
Frequency: .1171
The p-value is .0239
so we can conclude
significance

House Wren
Troglodytes aedon
2014 Arrival Week:
18
Non-2014 Week: 17
2014 Week 17
Frequency: .0423
Non-2014 Week 17
Frequency: .1514
The p-value is .0051
so we can conclude
significance

Veery
Catharus
2014 Arrival
Week:fuscescens

18
Non-2014 Week:
19
2014 Week 19
Frequency: .1818
Non-2014 Week 19
Frequency: .1208
The p-value is .
0884 so we cant
conclude
significance

Wood Thrush
Hylocichla
2014 Arrival
Week: mustellina

18
Non-2014 Week:
17
2014 Week 17
Frequency: .0563
Non-2014 Week 17
Frequency: .1640
The p-value is .
0071 so we can
conclude
significance

Grey Catbird
Dumatella carolinensis

2014 Arrival
Week: 17
Non-2014 Week:
17
Since the weeks
of arrival are the
same we cannot
conclude
anything about
the birds arrival
time

Ovenbird
Seiurus
aurocapillus
2014 Arrival
Week:

18
Non-2014 Week:
17
2014 Week 17
Frequency: .0563
Non-2014 Week 17
Frequency: .1009
The p-value is .
1062 so we cant
conclude
significance

Black-and-white Warbler
2014 ArrivalMniotilla
Week: varia

18
Non-2014 Week:
17
2014 Week 17
Frequency: .0704
Non-2014 Week 17
Frequency: .1366
The p-value is .
0485 so we can
conclude
significance

Common Yellowthroat
Geothlypis
2014 Arrival
Week: trichas

18
Non-2014 Week:
17
2014 Week 17
Frequency: .0423
Non-2014 Week 17
Frequency: .1041
The p-value is .
0440 so we can
conclude
significance

Yellow Warbler
Setophaga petechia

2014 Arrival
Week: 17
Non-2014 Week:
17
Since the arrival
time is the same
for both weeks
we cannot make
any conclusions
about the birds
arrival time

Chipping Sparrow
Spizella passerina

2014 Arrival
Week: 14
Non-2014 Week:
14
Since the arrival
time is the same
for both weeks
we cannot make
any conclusions
about the birds
arrival time

Rose-breasted Grosbeak
Pheuticus ludovicanus

2014 Arrival
Week: 17
Non-2014 Week:
17
Since the arrival
time is the same
for both weeks
we cannot make
any conclusions
about the birds
arrival time

Brown-headed Cowbird
Molothrus ater
2014 Arrival Week:
14
Non-2014 Week: 11
2014 Week 11
Frequency: .0161
Non-2014 Week 11
Frequency: .1444
The p-value is .0020
so we can conclude
significance

Baltimore Oriole
Icterus galbula
2014 Arrival Week:
18
Non-2014 Week: 17
2014 Week 17
Frequency: .0704
Non-2014 Week 17
Frequency: .2082
The p-value is .0021
so we can conclude
significance

Conclusions
Significantly Earlier

No Significance

Eastern Phoebe

Ruby-throated Hummingbird

Tree Swallow

Veery

House Wren

Grey Catbird

Wood Thrush

Ovenbird

Black-and-white Warbler

Yellow Warbler

Common Yellowthroat

Chipping Sparrow

Brown-headed Cowbird

Rose-breasted Grosbeak

Baltimore Oriole

Conclusions
Since more birds had significantly
earlier arrivals then we can conclude
that birds are arriving much later
8 birds arrived significantly late and
7 did not
Tree Swallows and Brown-headed
Cowbirds had the most significant
difference

But why?
Due to the long winter birds had
trouble leaving at the same time
they usually did
It may also have been a longer
journey due to the cold weather and
snow, which many migratory birds
are not used to
The bottom line is that the long
winter made it harder for the birds to
arrive at the average time causing