Owls as bioindicators: their spatial and temporal aspects in Eastern Europe

Open access


The article presents the unique results of a study of the spatial distribution of owls in the territory of the Republic of Tatarstan by season of the year on long-term data. Ravkin’s transect method was used to census fixed randomly selected plots spread over a large geographic area. Abundance a lot of species of owls strong changed of different seasons of the year. In general, owls were indifferent to latitudinal, longitudinal, and altitude gradients in the territory of the Republic of Tatarstan, especially in winter and autumn periods. Probability of occurrences of boreal and pygmy owls can be used as indicators of the biological diversity of forest ecosystems in winter period.

If the inline PDF is not rendering correctly, you can download the PDF file here.

  • Askeyev A. Askeyev O. & Askeyev I. (2017) Long-term woodpecker winter population dynamics in the Tatarstan Republic. Vogel-welt 137 130−133.

  • Askeyev I. & Askeyev O. (1999) The avifauna of the Republic of Tatarstan (abstract of the current state). Kazan 124 p. (in Russian)

  • Askeyev O. Askeyev A. & Askeyev I. (2017) Bird winter population dynamics at the eastern edge of Europe. Vogelwelt 137 134−142.

  • Askeyev O. Askeyev A. & Askeyev I. (2018) Recent climate change has increased forest winter birds densities in East Europe. Ecological research 33(2) 445−456.

  • Butchart S. Walpole M. Collen B. Van Strien A. Scharlemann J.P. Almond R.E. et al. (2010) Global biodiversity: indicators of recent declines. Science 328(5982) 1164-1168.

  • Chamberlain D. Glue D. & Toms M. P. (2009) Sparrowhawk Accipiter nisus presence and winter bird abundance. Journal of Ornithology 150(1) 247-254.

  • Cieślak M. & Kwieciński Z. (2009) Moult and breeding of captive Northern Hawk Owls Surnia ulula. In: Johnson D.H. Van Nieuwenhuyse D. & Duncan J.R. (eds) Proc. Fourth World Owl Conf. Oct–Nov 2007 Groningen The Netherlands. Ardea 97(4): 571–579.

  • Cieślak M. (2017) Feathers of European owls. Insights into species ecology and identification. Editorial team into English version: Sterno A. Kwieciński Z. Grudzińska –Sterno M. Oriolus Publishing House. Uppsala Sweden.

  • del Hoyo J. Elliott A. & Sargatal J. eds. (1999) Handbook of the Birds of the Word. Vol. 5. Barn-owls to Hummingbirds. Lynx Edicions Barcelona.

  • Elts J. Kuresoo A. Leibak E. Leito A. Lilleleht V. et al. (2003) Status and numbers of Estonian birds 1998–2002. Hirundo 16 58–83. (In Estonian)

  • Green M. Haas F. & Lindström Å. (2016) Övervakning av fåglarnas populationsutveckling: årsrapport för 2015. Biologiska institutionen Lunds universitet.

  • Groom M. Meffe G. & Carroll C. (2006) Principles of conservation biology. Sunderland: Sinauer Associates.

  • Hagemeijer W. J. & Blair M. J. (1997). The EBCC Atlas of European Breeding Birds: Their Distribution and Abundance. T & AD Poyser London.

  • Hörnfeldt B. Hipkiss T. & Eklund U. (2005) Fading out of vole and predator cycles? Proc. R. Soc. Lond. 272 2045–2049.

  • Korpimäki E. (1986) Niche relationships and life-history tactics of the three sympatric Strix owl species in Finland. Ornis Scandinavica 17(2): 126-132. DOI: 10.2307/3676861

  • Korpimäki E. (1992) Population dynamics of Fennoscandian owls in relation to wintering conditions and between-year fluctuations of food. The ecology and conservation of European owls 1-10.

  • Korpimäki E. & Hakkarainen H. (2012) The Boreal owl ecology behaviour and conservation of a forest-dwelling predator. Cambridge university press 259 p.

  • Kwieciński Z. (2017) Difficulties in finding feathers of the Eurasian Pygmy Owl G. passerinum during fieldwork. In: Cieślak M. Feathers of European owls. Insights into species ecology and identification. Editorial team into English version: Sterno A. Kwieciński Z. Grudzińska –Sterno M. Oriolus Publishing House. Uppsala Sweden. Pp: 195.

  • Mammen U. & Stubbe M. (2003) Monitoring of raptors and owls in Europe: Annual report for 2002. Förderverein für Ökologieund Monitoring von Greifvogel und Eulenarten Halle/Saale.

  • Mammen U. & Stubbe M. (2005) The situation of raptors and owls in Germany 1999–2002. Vogelwelt 126 53–65. (In German)

  • Mikkola H. (1983) Owls of Europe. T & A.D Poyser Ltd. 19: 178-212.

  • Newton I. (1998) Population limitation in birds. Academic Press London.

  • Newton I. (2002) Population limitation in Holarctic owls. Ecology and conservation of owls 3-29.

  • Newton I. (2008) The Migration Ecology of Birds. Academic Press.

  • Pakkala T. Lindén A. Tiainen J. Tomppo E. & Kouki J. (2014) Indicators of forest biodiversity: which bird species predict high breeding bird assemblage diversity in boreal forests at multiple spatial scales? Finnish Zoological and Botanical Publishing Board. In Annales Zoologici Fennici (pp. 457-476).

  • Pietiainen & Saurola (1997) Ural Owl Strix uralensis. Pages 412-413 in W.J.M. Hagemeijer and MJ. Blair (eds.) The EBCC atlas of European breeding birds. T. & A.D. Poyser London U.K.

  • Ravkin YS (1967) On the procedure of bird census in forest landscapes. In: Priroda ochagov kleshchevogo entsefalita na Altae pp 66-75 (in Russian).

  • Red Book of Republic of Tatarstan (2016) Kazan: Publisher «Idel-Press» 760 p (in Russian).

  • Saurola P. (2002) Natal dispersal distances of Finnish Owl: results from ringing. In: Newton I. Kavanagh R. Olsen J. Taylor I. (eds.). Ecology and Conservation of Owl. CSIRO Publishing Melbourne Australia.

  • Saurola P. & Francis (2004) Estimating population parameters and dispersal distances of owl from nationally coordinated ringing data in Finland. Animal Biodiversity and Conservation 27 1: 403–415.

  • Saurola P. (2009) Bad news and good news: population changes of Finnish owls during 1982–2007. Ardea 97(4) 469-483.

  • Sergio F. Newton I. Marchesi L. & Pedrini P. (2006) Ecologically justified charisma: preservation of top predators delivers bio-diversity conservation. Journal Applied Ecology 43(6) 1049-1055.

  • Schütz C. & Schulze C. H. (2018) Park size and prey density limit occur-rence of Eurasian Sparrowhawks in urban parks during winter. Avian Research 9(1) 30.

  • Solonen T. (1996) Patterns and variations in the structure of forest bird communities in southern Finland. Ornis Fennica 73(1) 12-26.

  • Tishechkin A. V. & Ivanovsky V. V. (2000) Die Brutleistung des Uralkauzes im nördlichen Weißrußland. Ornithologische Mitteilungen 52(3) 76-88.

  • Vartapetov L. Livanov S. Tsibulin S. & Evsukova A. (2005) Winter distribution of birds in the West Siberian Plain. Izvestia of Russian Academy of Sciences 2 201-207 (in Russian).

  • Vrezec A. L. (2003) Ural Tawny and Boreal Owls in north Dinaric Alps (central Slovenia). Journal Raptor research 37(1) 55-62.

  • Żurawlew P. Kwieciński Z. Grus M. Jelonek K. Kostuj P. (2018) New stands of ural owl Strix uralensis in Wielkopolska. Przegląd Przyrodniczy XXIX 3 (2018) 107-112.

Journal information
Impact Factor

CiteScore 2018: 0.84

Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.365

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 0 0 0
Full Text Views 55 55 55
PDF Downloads 48 48 48