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Thesis (Master's)

University of Akureyri > Viðskipta- og raunvísindasvið > Meistaraprófsritgerðir >

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1946/36285

  • Effect of habitat on breeding success and fledging age in Oystercatchers (Haematopus ostralegus) breeding in the south, west, and Westfjords of Iceland
  • Master's
  • Iceland is a globally important breeding area for a variety of ground-nesting wader species.
    This includes Eurasian Oystercatchers (Haematopus ostralegus), which are unique waders
    in that they: hatch semi-precocial chicks dependent on parental feeding, are partially
    migratory, and utilize both coastal and inland breeding territories. This system presents a
    unique opportunity to study the influences that differences in habitat quality have on
    breeding success and behavior of chicks. Little is known about patterns of habitat selection
    of wader species breeding in Iceland, or comparative breeding success of oystercatchers
    utilizing different habitats. This study identified and compared the breeding success and
    fledging age of oystercatchers breeding in different habitat types in the South, West, and
    Westfjords of Iceland. Additionally, provisioning data was obtained for the Westfjords
    region. The results show that productivity was influenced by habitat (p<0.001) and by
    region (p<0.001), and was higher in regions of predominantly coastal habitat use.
    Additionally, fledging success was influenced by habitat (p<0.001) and by region (p<0.01).
    Differences on predation rates and resource availability are most likely driving variances in
    reproductive success. Oystercatchers in the Westfjords increasingly fed their chicks small,
    coastal prey as chicks grew, which may also reflect an unavailability of terrestrial prey
    items, but provisioning studies should continue in the future to provide further information
    on resource use. Fledging age was similar across regions and habitat types, but more data
    is needed to explore this further. Understanding how oystercatchers are utilizing different
    resources, and how that might change and be translated into breeding success, is vital for
    understanding their population ecology and effectively contributing to management
    decisions of important bird areas.

  • Description is in Icelandic Verkefnið er lokað til 17.06.2021.
  • Jun 16, 2020
  • http://hdl.handle.net/1946/36285

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