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Body Condition and Fat Score in Local and Passage Populations of the Great Reed Warbler (Acrocephalus arundinaceus) During the Spring Migration in NE Bulgaria

. 2000. Bird station manual . SEEN, University of Gdańsk, Gdańsk. Chernetsov N. 1999. Timing of spring migration, body condition, and fat score in local and passage populations of the Reed Warbler Acrocephalus scirpaceus on the Courish Spit . Avian Ecol. Behav. 2: 75-88. Dolnik V.R. 1975. [ Migratory disposition in birds .] Nauka, Moscow. (In Russian). Franson T., Jakobsson S. 1998. Fat storage in male Willow Warblers in spring: Do residence arrive lean or fat ? Auk 115: 759

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Body mass and fat score changes in recaptured birds during the autumn migration at the Cernek ringing station in Turkey

Body mass and fat score changes in recaptured birds during the autumn migration at the Cernek ringing station in Turkey

The fat level and the body mass of recaptured birds ringed at the Cernek Ringing Station are presented in this study. Data from autumns of 2003-2005 were analysed. Species of different migratory and feeding habits are compared. A total of 351 recaptures of the Blackcap (Sylvia atricapilla), Garden Warbler (S. borin), Reed Warbler (Acrocephalus scirpaceus), Marsh Warbler (A. palustris) and Cetti's Warbler (Cettia cetti) were mist-netted and handled according to the South-East European Bird Migration Network (SEEN) standards.

The mean weight changes of the Reed Warbler and Marsh Warbler and those of the Blackcap and Garden Warbler were similar within each genus but higher in Sylvia spp. as compared to Acrocephalus spp. The recapture rate was the highest in the Cetti's Warbler but the mean weight increase was the lowest as this is essentially a sedentary species. The stopover duration differed among the species. The mean stopover length was similar within Acrocephalus spp. (8.5 days in the Reed Warbler, 6.4 days in the Marsh Warbler) and Sylvia spp. (5.6 days in the Blackcap, 5.4 days in the Garden Warbler) and different in the Cetti's Warbler (16.6 days).

Results indicate that migratory birds use Cernek location as refuelling station during the autumn migration and their fat level and body mass increase, but differ according to feeding and migrating habits.

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Bio-chemical properties and susceptibility to fire blight (Erwinia amylovora Burrill) of scab-resistant apple cultivars (Malus domestica Borkh.)

Abstract

The focus of our research was to evaluate different apples cultivars in terms of their biological properties and bioactive compounds content, and determine the levels of their resistance (or susceptibility) to fire blight. The properties of 10 scab-resistant apple cultivars were examined on the Žiča monastery estate (West Serbia) during the period from 2011 to 2015. The biological and chemical properties such as firmness, maturity stage, total soluble solids, total acids, total and reducing sugars, ascorbic acid content and surface blush of apple fruits were monitored. Various phenolic compounds in the tested samples were tentatively identified by LC-MS analyses. A study of generative properties included: number of flower buds, fruit mass and width, crop load, yield efficiency and yield. During the period of blooming and intensive shoot growth, artificial inoculations were carried out. For each cultivar, a fire blight score was determined by dividing the average length of necrotic tissue by the average total shoot length. In the study period, the cultivars ‘GoldRush’ (41.1 t ha−1) and ‘Florina’ (35.9 t ha−1) produced the highest yields, and the cultivars ‘Discovery’ (19.0 t ha−1) and Selection 25/63 (15.1 t ha−1) the lowest. The cultivar ‘William’s Pride’ produced the largest fruits, with an average fruit mass of 206.8 g. The earliest harvest period was recorded for the cultivar ‘Discovery’ (end of July), and the latest for the cultivar ‘GoldRush’ (beginning of October). The cultivar ‘Enterprise’ had the highest value of total phenols (432.2 mg 100 g−1 FW), while the cultivar ‘Topaz’ had the highest value of total flavanols (145.2 mg 100 g−1 FW). The highest degree of susceptibility to fire blight was found in Selection 25/63, and the greatest resistance was manifested by the cultivar ‘GoldRush’. In the five-year study period, the cultivars ‘GoldRush’, ‘Rewena’ and ‘Enterprise’ exhibited better bio-chemical properties and higher levels of resistance to fire blight than the remaining cultivars.

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Fat reserves and body mass in some passerines migrating in autumn through the southern Baltic coast

Fat reserves and body mass in some passerines migrating in autumn through the southern Baltic coast

The aim of the present paper is to serve with a huge data set on the fat and body mass of birds that have been caught during the field work of the Operation Baltic since 1983 (earlier data are still not available in a digitalised form). There are given fat score valuations of 38 species and correction factors for the body mass standardisation. Some comments on observed fat scores in species of different migratory habits are added. They should encourage students to continue the research process on a wider scale.

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Stopover Ecology of Some Passerines at Ankara (Central Turkey)

Stopover Ecology of Some Passerines at Ankara (Central Turkey)

In autumn 2002 we studied little known passerine migration at a woodland patch within the Middle East Technical University (METU) campus in Ankara (Turkey). A total of 954 individuals of 35 passerine species were mist-netted, ringed, measured, weighed and fat-scored (after Busse 2000). Blackcap (Sylvia atricapilla) and Willow Warbler (Phylloscopus trochilus) were the two most common species, with 308 and 145 individuals caught, respectively. Both are passage migrants at METU, recorded from mid-August to late October, representing several waves.

Only 11.5% of Blackcaps had the fat score of T6 and above, and among 20 retraps only 2 gained fat significantly. All the other retraps lost fat, stayed the same, or increased 1-2 scores at most. In contrast, Willow Warblers, as true trans-Saharan migrants, had the much higher proportion (46%) of individuals with fat scores of T6 and above. Most retrapped individuals gained fat, some with already high levels stayed the same, while none lost fat. We interpret these data in terms of known migratory ranges, diet types and habitat patch quality.

Although daily catches were low, a diverse range of species used METU as a stopover site. Fat deposition rates (of up to 50% of body weight within a week) suggest that the study site provided a high quality stopover habitat for most migrants. In Central Turkey, such suitable habitats with trees or tall shrubs are scarce, and therefore, crucial for migrants.

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Autumn Migration Dynamics, Body Mass, Fat Load and Stopover Behaviour of the Willow Warbler (Phylloscopus trochilus) at Manyas KuşcennetI National Park (NW Turkey)

Autumn Migration Dynamics, Body Mass, Fat Load and Stopover Behaviour of the Willow Warbler (Phylloscopus trochilus) at Manyas KuşcennetI National Park (NW Turkey)

Turkey is located on one of the major migratory routes between Palearctic and Afrotropical regions. Despite its importance for many species, few studies exist on bird migration over Turkey. In this study, autumn migration dynamics and stopover behaviour of the Willow Warbler, a passage migrant in Turkey, was documented and analysed at Manyas Kuşcenneti National Park (NW Turkey). Birds were mist-netted, ringed, measured, weighed and fat scored from mid-August in 2002 and end of August in 2003 to end of October in both years. Totally, 543 and 929 Willow Warblers were ringed in 2002 and 2003, respectively. For 2002 and 2003 respectively, fat score values (mean ± SE) were 4.63 ± 0.06 and 3.84 ± 0.05, while body mass reached 11.38 ± 0.07 and 10.37 ± 0.05 g for birds captured for the first time. Fat scores in 2003 showed a bimodal distribution with peaks of T2 and T5, indicating populations or groups with different migratory strategies. The number of retraps constituted 9.2-12.1% of birds captured. In both years, minimum stopover length ranged from 1 to 15 or 16 days with a median of 5 days (averages 5.26 and 5.54, respectively). The majority of the retraps put on significant fat in both years. Retraps continued to put on weight for up to two weeks after they had arrived. In this second study documenting the Willow Warbler migration in Turkey, it was revealed that such wetlands as Manyas Kuşcenneti National Park provide crucial stopover habitat for possibly several populations of the species enabling them to gain necessary fat loads before crossing two major ecological barriers, the Mediterranean Sea and the Sahara.

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Autumn Migration Of The Thrush Nightingale (Luscinia Luscinia) In Northern Hungary

Abstract

Kováts D. 2012. Autumn migration of the Thrush Nightingale (Luscinia luscinia) in northern Hungary. Ring 34: 23-36.

The autumn migration of the Thrush Nightingale was studied in Szalonna in northern Hungary in 1989-2010. Birds were mist-netted, ringed, aged, measured, weighed and fat scored. In total, 193 Thrush Nightingales were ringed during 22 years. Relations between arrival time and biometrical measurements were determined. Within the study period (6 August - 26 September) the migration curve was bimodal showing maximum on 22 August and 27 August. Immature birds arrived significantly earlier with lower body mass and shorter wing length and had more pointed wings in the first half of their passage. The distribution of fat score classes did not differ significantly between the early and late periods of the most intensive migration, although the mean of the deposited fat was the lowest during the peak of migration. Fat reserve distribution was bimodal in autumn suggesting that Thrush Nightingales probably start their journey from different breeding ranges (populations) or follow still undiscovered migration strategies of sex/age groups. The low proportion of recaptures proved that the area was not used as a stopover site or premigratory fattening area. Within 22 years of study, the median date of autumn migration of Thrush Nightingales shifted 7.9 days earlier, probably due to current climate change.

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Variation in body mass and fat reserves of the Sedge Warbler Acrocephalus schoenobaenus on autumn migration in the L'viv province (W Ukraine)

Variation in body mass and fat reserves of the Sedge Warbler Acrocephalus schoenobaenus on autumn migration in the L'viv province (W Ukraine)

The aim of the paper is limited to a rough describing peculiarities of relations between fat deposit level and the body mass as well as a seasonal and diurnal dynamics of catching at an inland study site located far to the North from important geographical barriers on the Sedge Warbler migration to Central Africa. Material was collected in 1999 and 2000 from July (11 Jul. 1999 and 28 Jul. 2000) till 29 August in L'viv province (western Ukraine). In the present paper 1066 Sedge Warblers caught in 1999 and 407 ones caught in 2000 were taken under consideration. Their body mass and fat score were recorded according to rules published by Busse (1983, 2000). During elaboration of the data the idea of body mass standardisation for a defined fat score (T 2) was adopted (Busse 1970) and adequate correction values (ci) were calculated. Because of the obtained results a new procedure of the correction values defining - if the data allow - is proposed.

In both years adults were highly significantly heavier than immatures. This finding leads to conclusion that summarising data for adult and immature Sedge Warblers in calculation of body mass correction values would result in significant growth of variance. Having compared the body mass in years 1999 and 2000 a pronounced difference between immatures was found. In 1999 the first period of migration was characterised by relatively high representation of adults (16.8%) and a low fat level (average fat score T = 1.76 and relative fat load t = -0.12 g for adults, while T = 1.57 and t = -0.21 g for immatures). This time was probably premigration dispersion and gaining of fat before migration rather than real migration movements. The share of adults among Sedge Warblers migrating in second and third periods was very similar in both studied years (1999 - 9.43% and 2000 - 9.46%). The fat load of birds caught during these periods was higher than in the starting period but still rather low as for long-distance migrants (T = 2.06-2.42 and t = 0.03-0.21 g for adults, T = 1.90-2.30 and t = -0.05-0.16 g for immatures). Both the fat load and body mass was growing during a day. The most interesting here were the differences in the growth rate: the average fat load grew during a day by 0.27 g while direct values of the actual body mass differed by as much as 0.84 g (that is more than two times more). This relation was repeated in 2000. That could mean that visible fat deposit does not reflect all gained fuel, but it should be studied more deeply than even big samples, from two years only, allow.

Analysing changes of the fat load and the body mass one must keep in mind that observed differences in the fat scores of birds caught in different parts of a day could be caused by two separate processes: (1) feeding and accumulation of fuel reserves (passing borders set in a fat scoring procedure) and (2) possible differentiation of the diurnal activity of birds that already have different levels of stored fat.

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Jericho (Palestine) Spring 2014 Ornithological and Parasitological Research Results

Abstract

Work begun in autumn 2013 at a research ringing site near Jericho in the Jordan Valley (Palestine) was continued in spring 2014 (8 March–18 April). Due to a flood, the area was much changed in relation to the autumn habitat distribution. Standard ornithological and ringing work was performed using mist nets. The methods used were in accordance with SEEN (SE European Bird Migration Network) standards, and apart from ringing included some measurements (wing length, tail length, wing formula) and scores (fat determination and body mass), as well as testing of the directional preferences of migrants. The ornithological work was expanded to include parasitological testing, taking into account migrant-helminth relations during migration. Altogether 508 birds from 44 species were ringed and inspected for external signs of infection by Collyriclum faba trematodes (subcutaneous cysts), and an additional 32 dead individuals were collected and dissected. Altogether 168 internal parasites were found. The most common migrants in spring were Lesser Whitethroat Sylvia curruca, Blackcap Sylvia atricapilla and Olivaceous Warbler Hippolais pallida, while the autumn dominants–Masked and Red-backed shrikes (Lanius nubicus and L. collurio) were scarce. In spring a good number of Dead Sea Sparrows Passer moabiticus were caught, but only two introduced Indian Silverbills Lonchura malabarica.

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The Ringing Site In Jericho (Palestine) – Development Of Bird Migration And Parasitological Research On The Great Rift Valley Flyway

ABSTRACT

A new research project near Jericho in the Jordan Valley (Palestine) was launched on 10 September 2013, work continued until October 23rd 2013. Standard ornithological work and bird ringing work was conducted using mist nets situated in an oasis type habitat of Wadi Qelt surrounded by palm plantations. The field methods followed the SEEN (SE European Bird Migration Network) standards that include apart from ringing of captured birds, also several measurements (wing length, tail length, wing formula) and scores (fat load and body mass), as well as the studies on the directional preferences of migrants using round, flat orientation cages. Ornithological research was enhanced by parasitological studies analysing migratory birds (hosts) - helminths relations during migration period of the former. This was a part of complex studies covering the Middle East and north African ringing sites. Altogether 481 individuals of birds representing 59 species were ringed and about 50 were retrapped. The most interesting was relatively high share of Masked and Red-backed shrikes as well as good number of birds of local species as Dead Sea Sparrows and introduced Indian Silverbills.

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