First Advisor

Daniela Rivarola

Second Advisor

Tyler Imfeld

Third Advisor

Mike Ghedotti


Regis College

Degree Name

MS Environmental Biology


Regis University

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Number of Pages

70 pages


Land-use change (LUC) is a key driver of biodiversity loss, altering the structure and function of ecosystems through human activities such as urbanization and agriculture. This change has led to habitat loss and fragmentation, resulting in the rapid decline of avian populations globally. Wildlife rehabilitation centers are the primary responders for injured birds and their records provide valuable data to monitor potential factors impacting bird populations. However, these datasets are underutilized in research. This study examined how LUC in the Front Range affects the likelihood and circumstances of admission of injured birds to the Rocky Mountain Wildlife Alliance (RMWA) in Sedalia, Colorado. A preliminary spatial analysis was conducted to delineate avian injuries across five habitat sectors, major roadways, and water bodies. Urban areas showed the highest probability of admissions, followed by residential areas. Water bodies and road proximities had no significant effect on the likelihood of circumstance of admission being anthropogenic versus natural. These findings establish a baseline for monitoring how different anthropogenic effects negatively impact avian populations and contribute to conservation efforts in the face of wildlife declines due to LUC.

Date of Award

Spring 2024

Location (Creation)

Denver, Colo.

Rights Statement

All content in this Collection is owned by and subject to the exclusive control of Regis University and the authors of the materials. It is available only for research purposes and may not be used in violation of copyright laws or for unlawful purposes. The materials may not be downloaded in whole or in part without permission of the copyright holder or as otherwise authorized in the “fair use” standards of the U.S. copyright laws and regulations.