Bird ringing in Britain and Ireland in 2010

Publication Type:Journal Article
Year of Publication:2011
Authors:Clark, JA, Dadam, D, Robinson, RA, Moss, D, Leech, DI, Barber, LJ, Blackburn, JR, Conway, GJ, De Palacio, D, Griffin, BM, Schäfer, S
Journal:Ringing & Migration
Volume:26
Issue:2
Date Published:2011
ISBN Number:0307-8698
Keywords:Acanthis cannabina, Acrocephalidae, Acrocephalus, Acrocephalus schoenobaenus, Aegithalidae, Aegithalos, Aegithalos caudatus, Calamodus schoenobaenus, Carduelis, Carduelis cannabina, Erithacus, Erithacus rubecula, Europe, Fringillidae, Ireland, Linaria, Linaria cannabina, Merula, Muscicapidae, Nannus troglodytes, Parus montanus, Phylloscopidae, Phylloscopus, Phylloscopus collybita, Phylloscopus collybitus, Poecile, Poecile montana, Poecile montanus, Prunella, Prunella modularis, Prunellidae, Sylvia, Sylvia atricapilla, Sylvia borin, Sylviidae, Troglodytes, Troglodytes troglodytes, Troglodytidae, Turdidae, Turdus, Turdus ericetorum, Turdus maximus, Turdus merula, Turdus philomelos, United Kingdom
Abstract:This is the 74th annual report of the British Trust for Ornithology's Ringing Scheme, covering data received and work carried out in 2010. Analytical work in the year concentrated on considering how we can improve demographic monitoring, an increasing focus for the Scheme. A broad review of the availability of demographic and count data for terrestrial-breeding species was carried out. This work will be further extended in 2011. To inform conservation we need to build population models for species with a range of ecologies and occupying different habitats. Reports of ringed birds make a large contribution to our understanding of two key demographic parameters ? survival and dispersal. An analysis of Chiffchaff Phylloscopus collybita recovery data from across Europe suggested they are tending to migrate south later and north earlier over time. There is also a suggestion that the migratory journey is shortening. Analysis of biometrics of birds wintering in Britain showed that they are largely from the breeding populations of the nominate race in Britain and the near Continent. Constant Effort Sites (CES) data showed that, for seven of the 24 species monitored, there was a significant decrease in adult abundance compared to the mean of the previous five years. As six of these species were residents, this may have been a result of the second severe winter in succession, although there was a short-term increase for Long-tailed Tit Aegithalos caudatus, which is usually affected by cold winters. The adult abundance of several long-distance migrants also increased. A long-term decline (1984?2000) is, however, still evident for five migrants and three residents, although for Willow Tit Poecile montana and Linnet Carduelis cannabina the sample sizes are low. The abundance of the short-distance migrants, Blackcap Sylvia atricapilla and Chiffchaff, has increased, possibly as a result of climate change. Productivity was higher than the mean of the previous five years for 12 species with the long-term trend increasing for eight species ? four migrants and four residents. The only significant decreases were for Blackbird Turdus merula and Long-tailed Tit, possibly as these species breed early and were affected by the severe winter. Dry summer weather is also likely to have contributed to the low productivity of Blackbirds and increasingly dry summers may be implicated in the long-term declines in productivity for both Blackbird and Song Thrush Turdus philomelos. Long-term trends in survival rates were produced using CES data for the first time in 2010. These suggested that the cold winter weather in 2009?10 reduced the survival rate of resident ground-feeding insectivores such as Dunnock Prunella modularis, Blackbird, Wren Troglodytes troglodytes and Robin Erithacus rubecula. Survival rates of migrants were relatively high, particularly for Garden Warbler Sylvia borin and Sedge Warbler Acrocephalus schoenobaenus, possibly as a result of good conditions on the wintering grounds or passage sites. Data for 129 Retrapping Adults for Survival (RAS) studies covering 39 species were submitted. For the first time we were able to calculate good or moderate annual estimates of survival for 18 species. A list of priority species for RAS was developed and promoted to volunteers. The total number of birds ringed (1,096,533) was the highest ever recorded, as well as being the first time the annual total has surpassed 1 million. It was 28% higher than the mean of the previous five years and 17% higher than in 2009. However, the total number of pulli ringed in 2009 (193,554) was only 12% higher than the preceding five-year mean, while that of fully grown birds (902,979) was 32% higher. The recovery total (17,315) was also the highest ever. This is partly due to changes in the way that records of colour-ringed and other specially marked birds are stored, but also reflects the increasing number of birds being ringed by a growing number of ringers. The number of recoveries of foreign-ringed birds (2,427) was higher than the mean of the preceding five years; this figure was influenced by varying response times of different ringing schemes, but was also partly as a result of multiple sightings. Recovery details for 221 individual birds are given in the final section of the report. They include movements that confirm suspected or known migration patterns, unexpected movements and longevity records.This is the 74th annual report of the British Trust for Ornithology's Ringing Scheme, covering data received and work carried out in 2010. Analytical work in the year concentrated on considering how we can improve demographic monitoring, an increasing focus for the Scheme. A broad review of the availability of demographic and count data for terrestrial-breeding species was carried out. This work will be further extended in 2011. To inform conservation we need to build population models for species with a range of ecologies and occupying different habitats. Reports of ringed birds make a large contribution to our understanding of two key demographic parameters ? survival and dispersal. An analysis of Chiffchaff Phylloscopus collybita recovery data from across Europe suggested they are tending to migrate south later and north earlier over time. There is also a suggestion that the migratory journey is shortening. Analysis of biometrics of birds wintering in Britain showed that they are largely from the breeding populations of the nominate race in Britain and the near Continent. Constant Effort Sites (CES) data showed that, for seven of the 24 species monitored, there was a significant decrease in adult abundance compared to the mean of the previous five years. As six of these species were residents, this may have been a result of the second severe winter in succession, although there was a short-term increase for Long-tailed Tit Aegithalos caudatus, which is usually affected by cold winters. The adult abundance of several long-distance migrants also increased. A long-term decline (1984?2000) is, however, still evident for five migrants and three residents, although for Willow Tit Poecile montana and Linnet Carduelis cannabina the sample sizes are low. The abundance of the short-distance migrants, Blackcap Sylvia atricapilla and Chiffchaff, has increased, possibly as a result of climate change. Productivity was higher than the mean of the previous five years for 12 species with the long-term trend increasing for eight species ? four migrants and four residents. The only significant decreases were for Blackbird Turdus merula and Long-tailed Tit, possibly as these species breed early and were affected by the severe winter. Dry summer weather is also likely to have contributed to the low productivity of Blackbirds and increasingly dry summers may be implicated in the long-term declines in productivity for both Blackbird and Song Thrush Turdus philomelos. Long-term trends in survival rates were produced using CES data for the first time in 2010. These suggested that the cold winter weather in 2009?10 reduced the survival rate of resident ground-feeding insectivores such as Dunnock Prunella modularis, Blackbird, Wren Troglodytes troglodytes and Robin Erithacus rubecula. Survival rates of migrants were relatively high, particularly for Garden Warbler Sylvia borin and Sedge Warbler Acrocephalus schoenobaenus, possibly as a result of good conditions on the wintering grounds or passage sites. Data for 129 Retrapping Adults for Survival (RAS) studies covering 39 species were submitted. For the first time we were able to calculate good or moderate annual estimates of survival for 18 species. A list of priority species for RAS was developed and promoted to volunteers. The total number of birds ringed (1,096,533) was the highest ever recorded, as well as being the first time the annual total has surpassed 1 million. It was 28% higher than the mean of the previous five years and 17% higher than in 2009. However, the total number of pulli ringed in 2009 (193,554) was only 12% higher than the preceding five-year mean, while that of fully grown birds (902,979) was 32% higher. The recovery total (17,315) was also the highest ever. This is partly due to changes in the way that records of colour-ringed and other specially marked birds are stored, but also reflects the increasing number of birds being ringed by a growing number of ringers. The number of recoveries of foreign-ringed birds (2,427) was higher than the mean of the preceding five years; this figure was influenced by varying response times of different ringing schemes, but was also partly as a result of multiple sightings. Recovery details for 221 individual birds are given in the final section of the report. They include movements that confirm suspected or known migration patterns, unexpected movements and longevity records.
URL:http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/03078698.2011.638487
Short Title:Ringing & Migration
Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith