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Stopover durations of three warbler species along their autumn migration route.


Schaub, M; Jenni, L (2001). Stopover durations of three warbler species along their autumn migration route. Oecologia, 128(2):217-227.

Abstract

In migrating birds, the success of migration is determined by stopover duration, the most important factor determining overall speed of migration, and fuel deposition rate. However, very little is known about stopover durations of small migrant birds, because appropriate
methods for data analysis were lacking until recently. We used a new capture-recapture analysis to estimate stopover durations of 1st-year reed warblers Acrocephalus
scirpaceus, sedge warblers A. schoenobaenus
and garden warblers Sylvia borin at 17 stopover sites in Europe and Africa during autumn. Average stopover duration of non-moulting reed warblers was 9.5 days
while moulting conspecifics stayed about twice as long. Average stopover duration of sedge warblers was 9.1 days and, in contrast to the other two species, differed between years at several sites. Garden warblers stayed 7.7 days on average. The long stopover duration of the reed warbler, resulting in slow overall migration speed, is related to its low fuel deposition rate. It can be explained by low, but predictable, food resources and an early departure during moult. Compared to the reed warbler, the stopover duration of the sedge warbler varies
more between sites and probably also between years, as the supply of its preferred diet (reed aphids) is spatially and temporally unpredictable but can be superabundant.
The short stopover duration of the garden warbler, leading to high overall migration speed, can be related to high fuel deposition rates, probably brought about by a change to an abundant, predictable and long-lasting fruit diet. Within species, stopover duration did not changesignificantly along the migration route. Hence, an increase of migration speed along the migration route, as
suggested in the literature, may be caused by longer flight bouts in the south. However, it remains largely unknown which environmental and possibly endogenous factors regulate stopover duration.

In migrating birds, the success of migration is determined by stopover duration, the most important factor determining overall speed of migration, and fuel deposition rate. However, very little is known about stopover durations of small migrant birds, because appropriate
methods for data analysis were lacking until recently. We used a new capture-recapture analysis to estimate stopover durations of 1st-year reed warblers Acrocephalus
scirpaceus, sedge warblers A. schoenobaenus
and garden warblers Sylvia borin at 17 stopover sites in Europe and Africa during autumn. Average stopover duration of non-moulting reed warblers was 9.5 days
while moulting conspecifics stayed about twice as long. Average stopover duration of sedge warblers was 9.1 days and, in contrast to the other two species, differed between years at several sites. Garden warblers stayed 7.7 days on average. The long stopover duration of the reed warbler, resulting in slow overall migration speed, is related to its low fuel deposition rate. It can be explained by low, but predictable, food resources and an early departure during moult. Compared to the reed warbler, the stopover duration of the sedge warbler varies
more between sites and probably also between years, as the supply of its preferred diet (reed aphids) is spatially and temporally unpredictable but can be superabundant.
The short stopover duration of the garden warbler, leading to high overall migration speed, can be related to high fuel deposition rates, probably brought about by a change to an abundant, predictable and long-lasting fruit diet. Within species, stopover duration did not changesignificantly along the migration route. Hence, an increase of migration speed along the migration route, as
suggested in the literature, may be caused by longer flight bouts in the south. However, it remains largely unknown which environmental and possibly endogenous factors regulate stopover duration.

Citations

64 citations in Web of Science®
80 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Zoology (former)
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
590 Animals (Zoology)
Language:English
Date:2001
Deposited On:11 Feb 2008 12:14
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 12:13
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:0029-8549
Publisher DOI:10.1007/s004420100654

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