AVIS-IBIS

Birds of Indian Subcontinent

Winter habitat selection by Marsh Tits Poecile palustris in a British woodland

Publication Type:Journal Article
Year of Publication:2014
Authors:Broughton, RK, Bellamy, PE, Hill, RA, Hinsley, SA
Journal:Bird Study
Volume:61
Issue:3
Date Published:2014
ISBN Number:0006-3657
Keywords:Paridae, Poecile, Poecile hypermelaenus, Poecile palustris
Abstract:Capsule Radio-tracking and remote sensing showed Marsh Tits selected for English Oak Quercus robur trees within large winter home-ranges.Aims To investigate winter habitat selection by Marsh Tits in a British wood, testing for preferences in tree species and woodland structure.Methods Thirteen Marsh Tits were radio-tracked during the winter, and home-ranges were derived. Lidar and hyperspectral data were used to compare the vegetation structure and tree species composition of entire home-ranges and the core areas of intensive use within. Instantaneous sampling observations provided further information for tree species utilization.Results The mean home-range was very large (39?ha, n?=?13). There were no significant differences in mean tree height, canopy closure, understorey height, or shrub volume between full home-ranges and the core areas of use. Core areas contained a significantly greater proportion of English Oak relative to availability in the full home-ranges. Instantaneous sampling confirmed that English Oak was used significantly more than other trees.Conclusion Selection for English Oak during winter contrasted with previous studies of breeding territories, indicating that habitat usage varies seasonally and demonstrating the need for habitat selection studies throughout the year. Large home-ranges help to explain the Marsh Tit's sensitivity to habitat fragmentation.Capsule Radio-tracking and remote sensing showed Marsh Tits selected for English Oak Quercus robur trees within large winter home-ranges.Aims To investigate winter habitat selection by Marsh Tits in a British wood, testing for preferences in tree species and woodland structure.Methods Thirteen Marsh Tits were radio-tracked during the winter, and home-ranges were derived. Lidar and hyperspectral data were used to compare the vegetation structure and tree species composition of entire home-ranges and the core areas of intensive use within. Instantaneous sampling observations provided further information for tree species utilization.Results The mean home-range was very large (39?ha, n?=?13). There were no significant differences in mean tree height, canopy closure, understorey height, or shrub volume between full home-ranges and the core areas of use. Core areas contained a significantly greater proportion of English Oak relative to availability in the full home-ranges. Instantaneous sampling confirmed that English Oak was used significantly more than other trees.Conclusion Selection for English Oak during winter contrasted with previous studies of breeding territories, indicating that habitat usage varies seasonally and demonstrating the need for habitat selection studies throughout the year. Large home-ranges help to explain the Marsh Tit's sensitivity to habitat fragmentation.
URL:http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00063657.2014.934193
Short Title:Bird Study
Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith