Budapest, Hungary
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Finch T.,University of East Anglia | Dunning J.,University of Salford | Kiss O.,University of Szeged | Racinskis E.,Latvian Ornithological Society | And 6 more authors.
Journal of Ornithology | Year: 2017

Despite recent advances in avian tracking technology, archival devices still present several limitations. Traditional ring recoveries provide a complementary method for studying migratory movements, particularly for cohorts of birds with a low return rate to the breeding site. Here we provide the first international analysis of ring recovery data in the European Roller Coracias garrulus, a long-distance migrant of conservation concern. Our data comprise 58 records of Rollers ringed during the breeding season and recovered during the non-breeding season. Most records come from Eastern Europe, half are of juveniles and over three quarters are of dead birds. Thus, ring recoveries provide migration data for cohorts of Rollers—juveniles and unsuccessful migrants—for which no information currently exists, complementing recent tracking studies. Qualitatively, our results are consistent with direct tracking studies, illustrating a broad-front migration across the Mediterranean Basin in autumn and the use of the Arabian Peninsula by Rollers from eastern populations in spring. Autumn movements were, on average, in a more southerly direction for juveniles than adults, which were more easterly. Juvenile autumn recovery direction also appeared to be more variable than in adults, though this difference was not statistically significant. This is consistent with juveniles following a naïve vector-based orientation program, and perhaps explains the ‘moderate’ migratory connectivity previously described for the Roller. In the first (qualitative) analysis of Roller non-breeding season mortality, we highlight the high prevalence of shooting. The recovery age ratio was juvenile-biased in autumn but adult-biased in spring. Although not statistically significant, this difference points towards a higher non-breeding season mortality of juveniles than adults. Our study demonstrates the complementarity of ring recoveries to direct tracking, providing an insight into the migration of juvenile Rollers and non-breeding season mortality. © 2016, The Author(s).


Kiss O.,University of Szeged | Tokody B.,BirdLife Hungary | Ludnai T.,Kiskunsag National Park Directorate | Moskat C.,Eötvös Loránd University
Acta Zoologica Academiae Scientiarum Hungaricae | Year: 2017

Provisioning of artificial nest-boxes proved to be an effective method to make suitable breeding sites for secondary cavity nester birds due to the lack of natural hollows. The European roller (Coracias garrulus) is a threatened bird species in Europe, which suffered a serious decline throughout its breeding range. Changing agricultural practices seem to be the main causes attributed to the shortage of suitable breeding sites. in this study we aimed to investigate which factors affect the occupancy rate of newly provided nest-boxes. Four-year rollers' occupancy data were analysed by generalized linear models. Our results showed that nest-box characteristics (holder type and height above ground) and the presence of conspecifics significantly influenced rollers' nest-box occupancy. We conclude that nest-box visibility, height and the presence of conspecifics should also be considered when starting a nest-box supplementation program to ensure an effective method for the conservation of rollers.


Gyimothy Z.,University of West Hungary | Gyuracz J.,University of West Hungary | Bank L.,BirdLife Hungary | Banhidi P.,BirdLife Hungary | And 3 more authors.
Biologia | Year: 2011

The purpose of this study was to describe the autumn migration dynamics of juvenile (n = 3075) and adult (n = 596) robin Erithacus rubecula in Hungary. Capturing and ringing of birds took place at five bird ringing stations of Actio Hungarica between 13 August and 27 October, 2004. The number of captured juvenile and adult individuals rated to one net was the lowest in the reeds of Izsák and the highest in the woody areas of Szalonna, where adults were present at a higher proportion. The migration dynamics of the robin showed that the end of September and the beginning of October was the peak time for passing through Hungary. Based on the estimated time of the 10% of daily capture, it can be stated that juvenile birds started their migration as early as the end of August or at the beginning of September while the migration of the adults started later. The migration started earliest in Szalonna and latest in Izsák. The comparison of daily catch dynamics (based on the estimated time of 10% and 50% of daily captures) of juveniles and adults between study sites showed that similarity of daily capture was higher in the case of juveniles. The five study sites had different qualities from the point of view of the robins' habitat preference. Our results showed that the reed-bed of Izsák had only peripheral importance while the other forest and bushy study areas played a key role in resting and feeding during the migration of the robin. © 2011 Versita Warsaw and Springer-Verlag Wien.


Gyimothy Z.S.,University of West Hungary | Gyuracz J.,University of West Hungary | Bank L.,BirdLife Hungary | Banhidi P.,BirdLife Hungary | And 3 more authors.
Acta Zoologica Academiae Scientiarum Hungaricae | Year: 2011

The aim of this study was to analyse the patterns of autumn migration of Robins Erithacus rubecula in Hungary. Capturing and ringing of birds took place at the bird ringing stations of BirdLife Hungary in Tömörd, Sumony, Ócsa, Izsák, and Szalonna between the 13th of August and the 27th of October, 2004. During this period 3671 individuals were captured and 553 were recaptured at the five study sites. In September-October, the birds migrating across geographically more distant study sites differed from each other the most. They came from various northern areas. The mean of the stored fat of the ringed birds in October was the smallest in the wooded areas of Szalonna, although the increase of fat of the recaptured birds was the biggest here. These study sites, which differ in vegetation, may play different role in migration. We conclude that the stopover area and the fall migration period do affect the wing-length, body mass and fat store of migratory Robins and that there is interactive effect of both ringing site and month.


Kvist L.,University of Oulu | Giralt D.,Center Tecnologic Forestal Of Catalonia | Valera F.,CSIC - Estación Experimental De Zonas Áridas | Hoi H.,Konrad Lorenz Institute for Comparative Ethology | And 3 more authors.
Ibis | Year: 2011

The Lesser Grey Shrike has suffered successive declines in population size and a marked contraction of its breeding range since the early 20th century, largely because of long-term agricultural intensification. This has resulted in a severely fragmented distribution in Western Europe, with isolated breeding nuclei in Spain, France and Italy and a more continuous distribution in Eastern Europe and Asia. Using a combination of nuclear and mitochondrial markers, we assessed the genetic structure and diversity of Lesser Grey Shrike populations from Western Europe, Central Europe and Asia. There was significant genetic differentiation among three major regional groups, one European and two Asian. Genetic diversity measures were lowest in the smallest and most marginal Spanish population. Limited genetic diversity, combined with rapid population decline, suggests the Spanish population may face extinction in the near future. © 2010 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2010 British Ornithologists' Union.


Kiss O.,University of Szeged | Tokody B.,BirdLife Hungary | Deak B.,Mta Of Biodiversity And Ecosystem Services Research Group | Moskat C.,Eötvös Loránd University
Journal for Nature Conservation | Year: 2016

European rollers (Coracias garrulus) were almost extinct from large parts of Hungary in the 1970-1980s. However up till now their population size increased considerably, mainly due to a nature conservation campaign, supplying artificial nest-boxes for breeding. We studied which factors affected rollers' occurrences at the landscape scale in southern Hungary, under natural circumstances and when artificial nest-boxes were supplied. We analyzed the composition and the configuration of the landscape at two spatial scales. We found that beside the presence of natural grasslands, heterogeneous landscape provided high quality breeding and hunting sites favorable for rollers. Even though habitat characteristics of roller territories with natural holes or nest-boxes were similar, breeding sites without artificial nest-boxes harbored higher coverage of forests and heterogeneous agricultural areas. Sites with occupied and unoccupied nest-boxes considerably overlapped, suggesting that the available habitats were not saturated. Nest-box supplementation proved to be an effective tool for rollers' conservation in areas where natural nesting sites were limited, but prey resources were available. Consequently, the preservation of landscape heterogeneity is a key factor which should be taken into consideration in the conservation management of roller populations. © 2015 Elsevier GmbH.


Csorgo T.,Eötvös Loránd University | Halmos G.,BirdLife Hungary
Acta Zoologica Academiae Scientiarum Hungaricae | Year: 2010

Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus) is one of the commonest species of Charadriiformes with a wide distribution area in the Palaearcticum. The European breeding populations have two main wintering areas. The populations from Northern and Western Europe winter mainly on the Atlantic coast, Iberian Peninsula and northwestern Africa. The wintering area of the eastern breeding populations is mainly along the Mediterranean Sea basin. SCHENK's original postulate (1934), i.e. "the Hungarian breeding population winters in the western basin of the Mediterranean Sea" has been generally accepted. Recent recapture data has led us to reconsider this notion. Our study was carried out by analysing long distance recoveries of Lapwings ringed in Hungary over the last century. The data originated from the databank of the Birdlife Hungary Ringing Centre. Data were separated into four groups according to recapture sites - 1. Mediterranean Basin catchment area, 2. Atlantic Ocean catchment area - and according to the date of ringing - Period 1. 1909-32, Period 2. 1974-2005. According to our data the wintering site of this species has changed, recently more birds have been migrating to the Atlantic Ocean catchment area, rather than to the traditional west Mediterranean area. This observation can be explained as a true biological phenomenon and/or as a product of random sampling of data, as well. Either the composition of the Hungarian breeding population has changed or the representativeness of data provision of these two areas has changed asymmetrically.

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