Daniel Steven Cooper

Daniel Steven Cooper
Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County · Department of Ornithology

Doctor of Philosophy
Senior Conservation Biologist, Resource Conservation District-Santa Monica Mountains.

About

92
Publications
11,660
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228
Citations

Publications

Publications (92)
Technical Report
Full-text available
This report presents a synthetic habitat and vegetation mapping scheme for the entire Los Angeles River channel, taking into account both floristics and wildlife use.
Article
Review of How Birds Evolve by Douglas Futuyama. Excellent overview of avian evolution (and the history of ornithological research on the subject).
Article
As the world urbanizes, identifying traits that allow some species to thrive in cities will be key to predicting which species will likely remain common, and which may require conservation attention. Large, diverse, widely‐distributed, and readily‐documented, raptors represent an ideal taxonomic group to understand how species persist and thrive in...
Article
Full-text available
Urbanization is a major driver of global species loss. While cities with suitable habitats and conservation policies may support locally-high biodiversity levels, we suspected that the complexity of managing very large cities might counteract the advantage of large geographic area, and these cities may be less effective at biodiversity conservation...
Article
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We explored nest site placement and re-use relative to ornamental tree usage and urbanization level in a diurnal raptor community in southern California (USA) during three discrete time periods spanning five decades (1971–2018). Re-use of prior years’ nests varied among species, with Red-tailed Hawks (Buteo jamaicensis) and American Kestrels (Falco...
Article
Full-text available
Habitat loss and fragmentation due to urbanization are key contributors to the decline of biodiversity. The consequence of these factors is small, isolated populations that are more susceptible to deterministic and stochastic threats of extinction. There is an increasing trend in population reductions of the western gray squirrel (Sciurus griseus)...
Article
Full-text available
As part of an 11-state inventory, we censused the Double-crested Cormorant (Phalacrocorax auritus) in the interior of California from 2009 to 2012, using a combination of aerial, ground, and boat surveys. An estimated 8791 pairs breeding in the interior of the state in 2009–2012 exceeded the 7170 pairs estimated in 1998–1999. In both periods, cormo...
Article
Full-text available
Habitat loss and fragmentation due to urbanization are key contributors to the decline of biodiversity. The consequence of these factors is small, isolated populations that are more susceptible to deterministic and stochastic threats of extinction. There is an increasing trend in population reductions of the western gray squirrel (Sciurus griseus)...
Article
Many ecological and evolutionary processes are affected by urbanization, but cities vary by orders of magnitude in their human population size and areal extent. To quantify and manage urban biodiversity, one must understand both how biodiversity scales with city size, and how ecological, evolutionary, and socioeconomic drivers of biodiversity scale...
Preprint
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Many ecological and evolutionary processes are affected by urbanization, but cities vary by orders of magnitude in both their size and degree of development. To quantify and manage urban biodiversity we must understand both how biodiversity scales with city size, and how ecological, evolutionary, and socioeconomic drivers of biodiversity scale with...
Article
Full-text available
As part of an 11-state inventory in the western United States orga- nized by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, we coordinated censuses of 15 species of breeding colonial waterbirds throughout California from 2009 to 2012. Here we describe the status of the five widespread species of colonial ardeids in California during that period, combining the...
Article
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We present an analysis of life history and behavioral traits associated with urbanization for 52 breeding bird species on 173 survey blocks in the Los Angeles area of southern California, United States, across two time periods, 1995–1999 and 2012–2016. We used observational data from two community science efforts and an estimate of urban land cover...
Technical Report
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Here I present an analysis of quarterly survey results from 55 visits to Malibu Lagoon from 2005-2018, with references to changes in the avifauna of the "Western Channels" portion of the lagoon that were the subject of restoration in 2012-13. Overall numbers of individual birds detected on quarterly surveys were variable from year to year, but show...
Article
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From 1950 through 2016, the Western Snowy Plover (Charadrius nivosus niuosus) did not nest on Los Angeles County beaches. But between 16 April and 21 May 2017, up to four pairs initiated five nests in Los Angeles County and one at a new site in Orange County. Between 12 May and 15 June 2017, ten eggs hatched, including one incubated at a wildlife c...
Article
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At the northern edge of its range, the California Gnatcatcher has long been known to occur from eastern Ventura County east into northwestern Los Angeles County, but the current status of birds in these areas is not well understood. We review historical and recent sources of information and draw two main conclusions: first, that the California Gnat...
Technical Report
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Ecological data and alternative restoration vision for a highly-threatened coastal wetland complex on the Los Angeles County - Orange County border
Article
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We provide an overview of the distribution of lowland and otherwise isolated populations of the western gray squirrel (Sciurus griseus) in the Los Angeles area of southern California, an area that has experienced a recent and ongoing invasion by the non-native eastern fox squirrel (Sciurus niger), an urban-adapted species introduced a century ago....
Article
Griffith Park in Los Angeles is notable for its high ecological integrity within a highly urbanized region. We present results of a 2008 bat survey conducted in the park that confirmed seven bat species, and discuss an additional three species that have been recorded incidentally nearby. On the basis of our research, the Griffith Park bat community...
Conference Paper
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Background/Question/Methods The Los Angeles River represents one of the largest shorebird stopover, wintering and breeding areas in coastal southern California, with tens of thousands of individuals representing nearly 40 species of shorebirds are present each day nearly year-round. While most of the acreage and ecological aspects of the original...
Conference Paper
Background/Question/Methods Major changes in riparian habitats in the Los Angeles River drainage resulted in large scale avifaunal changes in the late 19th Century and most of the 20thCentury, including the complete extirpation of riparian-obligate species such as Yellow-billed Cuckoo, Long-eared Owl and Willow Flycatcher. Recognition of the rive...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Background/Question/Methods Mammals with large area requirements and wide-ranging movements are vulnerable to habitat fragmentation. Their populations may persist if animals can move between fragments, but connectivity may be limited in cities where habitat is scarce and busy roads and other intensive development inhibit animal movement. While mu...
Article
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Few long-term examples exist of wildlife population trends in urban environments despite the recent recognition of the importance of biodiversity in cities. Founded in 1896, Griffith Park's over 1,700 ha in Los Angeles adjacent to Hollywood represent the largest municipal park in California. Through the 1920s, biologists studied the natural area wi...
Article
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The Cactus Wren (Campylorhynchus brunneicapillus) is a polytypic species widespread in the southwestern U.S. and northern Mexico. Though closer in plumage characteristics to the desert subspecies anthonyi, populations resident in coastal sage scrub on the coastal slope of Ventura County and Los Angeles County occupy an ecological niche more similar...
Article
Full-text available
The Cactus Wren (Campylorhynchus brunneicapillus) is a polytypic species widespread in the southwestern U.S. and northern Mexico. Though closer in plumage characteristics to the desert subspecies anthonyi, populations resident in coastal sage scrub and alluvial fan scrub on the coastal slope of Los Angeles County occupy an ecological niche more sim...
Technical Report
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An assessment of multiple alluvial fan relicts across the northeastern Los Angeles Basin (base of San Gabriel Mountains foothills), looking at flora and fauna, to compare with small fragment of San Antonio Wash nominally protected by Padua Park, City of Claremont.
Data
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Technical Report
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In May 2007, a wildfire burned 20% of 1,700-hectare Griffith Park, a large area of rugged native chaparral and woodland in the city of Los Angeles. Bird surveys were conducted in and around the burn area during the following winter and spring (late 2007 and 2008) to characterize the overall burned and unburned bird communities, and to identify spec...
Article
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We established 42 carnivore detection stations in Griffith Park, Los Angeles, CA, in June 2007 to gather baseline information about wildlife species in the park. We documented the widespread presence of coyotes (Canis latrans), striped skunks (Mephitis mephitis), and raccoons (Procyon lotor), and the localized presence of bobcats (Lynx rufus), gray...
Article
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The historical Ballona Wetlands in coastal Los Angeles County were once one of the most significant coastal wetland systems in southern California, but were greatly reduced in extent and ecological function by the mid-1900s. Starting around 1900, the Ballona area saw the near-complete elimination of two major vegetation types (riparian scrub and fr...
Data
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Data
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Technical Report
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Article
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Successful ecological restoration depends on a clear understanding of the history of local species loss and colonization. One area of California where this can be uniquely achieved is the Ballona Wetlands, one of the best-studied coastal habitats in the state, recently acquired by the State of California for restoration and protection as a proposed...
Article
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The concrete-lined channel of the lower Los Angeles River in Long Beach supports one of the largest concentrations of shorebirds in southern California during fall migration. Each fall, the Black-necked Stilt (Himantopus mexicanus), Western Sandpiper (Calidris mauri), and Least Sandpiper (Calidris minutilla) occur in the thousands of individuals pe...
Article
The Puente-Chino Hills, extending west into the highly urbanized Los Angeles Basin, represent one of the largest expanses of lowland habitats in the region. During spring and early summer of 1997 and 1998, birds and vegetation surveys were conducted to clarify the influence of geographical position in the distribution of birds in the hills. Using l...
Article
Full-text available
Surveys of breeding birds in the remaining 20,000 ha of open space in the Puente-Chino Hills of southern California during spring and early summer 1997 and 1998 revealed several species dedining or nearing extirpation in the Los Angeles area. This report represents the first treatment of the distribution of the birds of this fast-disappearing natur...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Executive Summary During spring and summer of 1997 and 1998, we conducted a distribution survey of birds and associated habitats of the Puente-Chino Hills for the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority. From over 300 stationary points and nearly 50 walking transects, we recorded evidence of breeding for nearly 100 bird species, including s...
Article
Studies on nest predation in temperate and Neotropical forests have documented increased predation of nests within small forest patches and near forest edge. To test the applicability of this finding in the Paleotropics, we monitored artificial nests placed near the edge and within the interior of a selectively logged rain forest in peninsular Mala...