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Breeding birds of shelterbelts near Sombor (NW Serbia)

In 2008, breeding birds were studied in the shelterbelts surrounded by arable land NW of Sombor (Vojvodina, NW Serbia). Seven 500 m long sections of wooded shelterbelts were selected and surveyed for birds six times between May and July. Sampling plots differed in tree species composition and dominance, in height of trees, and presence and composition of shrub and herb layers. 22 breeding species were found with a mean density of 9.86 ± 1.47 pairs/km of shelterbelt. The mean number of species per shelterbelt was 8.3 ± 1.2. Species richness ranged from 4 (shelterbelt G) to 14 (shelterbelt D) species. Similarity, measured by the Sørensen index, showed strong qualitative similarity (over 70%) between the compared communities in only 19% of all possible pairs of shelterbelts. The most abundant breeding species were Golden Oriole Oriolus oriolus and Greenfinch Carduelis chloris, with overall linear densities of 2.9 and 2.6 pairs/km, respectively. Overall linear densities of a further four species (Red-backed Shrike Lanius collurio, Syrian Woodpecker Dendrocopos syriacus, Whitethroat Sylvia communis and Cuckoo Cuculus canorus) exceeded 1 pair/km. The densities of breeding birds are compared to those obtained during other studies in Europe and elsewhere.