Spatial Patterns of Bird Communities of the Lower Dnieper Sands During the Breeding Season: Differentiation Factors

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Abstract

Using hierarchical cluster analysis there were distinguished six spatial patterns of bird communities during the breeding season in the Lower Dnieper Sands. The differentiation of these patterns is based on a spatial heterogeneity in the area ratio of different habitats. The sites with natural and sub-natural landscapes hold three types of bird communities. Another type of the bird community is relatively similar to the previous three, but characterized by a poor quantitative and qualitative bird composition; it is associated with open landscapes with destroyed natural vegetation. Bird communities of artificial pine plantations (the most transformed landscapes of the Lower Dnieper Sands) are very different from those in the natural and sub-natural landscapes. The spectra of ecological groups of different bird communities match the spectra of different habitat types obtained using a supervised classification of remote sensing data. It makes it possible to use a topological model of the habitat types (based on remote sensing data) as a predictor for GIS modelling of spatial distribution of different birds communities throughout the Lower Dnieper Sands.

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Vestnik Zoologii

The Journal of National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, Schmalhauzen Institute of Zoology

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