Migration of Central and East European Acrocephalus Warblers at the Eastern Adriatic Coast: An Analysis of Recoveries
Migration routes and origins of the Reed Warbler (Acrocephalus scirpaceus), Great Reed Warbler (A. arundinaceus) and Sedge Warbler (A. schoenobaenus) populations migrating through the eastern Adriatic coast were investigated by analysing recoveries of birds ringed or found at two eastern Adriatic wetlands during autumn migration. There were 75, 104 and 63 long-distance recoveries for these three species, respectively. Great Reed Warblers from central and eastern Europe and Sedge Warblers from countries surrounding the Baltic Sea use the eastern Adriatic wetlands as stopover sites and continue their migration across the Mediterranean. Some Great Reed Warblers use south-western route during their return migration. Reed Warblers of unknown origin, presumably from eastern Europe continue their migration through south-western route to Spain (mean distance - 1329.3 ± 118.0 km, n = 20; mean azimuth - 251.05 ± 4.91°, n = 20; mean velocity - 63.25 km/day, n = 16). Local breeding Reed Warblers migrate southeast along the eastern Mediterranean (azimuth 117.53°). Eastern Adriatic coast represents a crossroads for migratory warblers using south-western, south-eastern and central Mediterranean flyways.