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Geolocators reveal three consecutive wintering areas in the thrush nightingale
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Zoology, Ethology.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-9741-4431
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Zoology, Ethology.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-3476-3925
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Zoology, Ethology.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2452-9609
2012 (English)In: Animal Migration, ISSN 2084-8838, Vol. 1, 1-7 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The winter distribution of many migratory birds wintering in tropical Africa is poorly known. After the crossing of the Sahara Desert, some long-distance migrants typically stay in the Sahel zone for an extended period before continuing migration to their main wintering areas south of the equator. Here we show how two thrush nightingales (Luscinia luscinia) fitted with light-level geolocators, after a six to seven week long stay in the Sahel zone of Sudan, moved to an intermediate area in northern Kenya for a month-long stay before continuing to their final wintering areas in southern Africa. These data indicate that thrush nightingales may use three consecutive wintering sites during their stay in Africa. The migratory movements in Africa between wintering sites are well-coordinated with high precipitation in these areas, suggesting that thrush nightingales track peaks of insect abundance occurring after rains. This three-stage wintering strategy has, to our knowledge, previously not been described, and shows that long-distance migrants can have complex wintering behaviour.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. Vol. 1, 1-7 p.
Keyword [en]
Bird migration, Africa, Sahel region, Geolocator, Stopover, Wintering pattern
National Category
Behavioral Sciences Biology
Research subject
Ethology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-80175DOI: 10.2478/ami-2012-0001OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-80175DiVA: diva2:552158
Available from: 2012-09-13 Created: 2012-09-13 Last updated: 2016-02-22Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Migratory routes and stopover behaviour in avian migration
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Migratory routes and stopover behaviour in avian migration
2016 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Migratory birds, some small and light weight as matchboxes, engage in seasonal inter-continental journeys in order to take advantage of the long summer days and abundance of food at northern latitudes to breed and raise their young, and then escape the harsh winters by migrating to lower latitudes. This thesis deals with two important aspects of migration, the routes taken during migration and the birds’ behaviour at stopovers. The migratory routes are for many species unknown, whole or in part, and this is especially true for species that migrate nocturnally. At stopovers birds replenish fuel reserves that powers migratory flight, and studying how birds utilise stopovers is important in order to understand how migration is organised. In this thesis I have used modern tracking technology to study both continental wide movements of thrush nightingales (Luscinia luscinia) and common rosefinches (Carpodacus erythrinus) using small light-level geolocators, and smaller scale movements at a single stopover site of garden warblers (Sylvia borin) using miniature radio-transmitters. I have also studied the fuelling behaviour of garden warblers during autumn migration in the field and in the lab, and great reed warblers (Acrocephalus arundinaceus) at a stopover site on Crete during spring migration after the Sahara crossing. The thesis discusses the significance of several aspects of migration shown by the birds that would have been very difficult to detect without the aid of modern tracking technology, such as loop migration, prolonged stops during migration, multiple wintering sites, and nocturnal relocations at stopover sites. Studies carried out at stopover sites also show that garden warblers and great reed warblers can attain large fuel loads even at sites where they have no barrier to cross and this might be a result of good foraging conditions. The thesis also highlights the importance of combining different techniques when studying stopover behaviour to get reliable estimates on stopover durations and fuel deposition rates as well as the importance of choosing sites preferred by birds when planning stopover studies.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Zoology, Stockholm University, 2016. 49 p.
Keyword
Bird migration, migration routes, stopover, geolocator, radio telemetry, tracking, fuel deposition
National Category
Behavioral Sciences Biology
Research subject
Ethology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-126975 (URN)978-91-7649-333-5 (ISBN)
Public defence
2016-04-08, Vivi Täckholmsalen (Q-salen), NPQ-huset, Svante Arrhenius väg 20, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

At the time of the doctoral defense, the following papers were unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 4: Manuscript. Paper 5: Manuscript.

Available from: 2016-03-18 Created: 2016-02-18 Last updated: 2017-02-24Bibliographically approved

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