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Translocation of threatened New Zealand falcons to vineyards increases nest attendance, brooding and feeding rates.

Kross SM, Tylianakis JM, Nelson XJ - PLoS ONE (2012)

Bottom Line: Parents with larger broods brought in larger prey items and a greater total sum of prey biomass.Some of these results can be attributed to the supplementary feeding of falcons in vineyards.Although agricultural regions globally are rarely associated with raptor conservation, these results suggest that translocating New Zealand falcons into vineyards has potential for the conservation of this species.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Biological Sciences, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand. Saramaekross@gmail.com

ABSTRACT
Anthropogenic landscapes can be rich in resources, and may in some cases provide potential habitat for species whose natural habitat has declined. We used remote videography to assess whether reintroducing individuals of the threatened New Zealand falcon Falco novaeseelandiae into a highly modified agricultural habitat affected the feeding rates of breeding falcons or related breeding behavior such as nest attendance and brooding rates. Over 2,800 recording hours of footage were used to compare the behavior of falcons living in six natural nests (in unmanaged, hilly terrain between 4 km and 20 km from the nearest vineyard), with that of four breeding falcon pairs that had been transported into vineyards and nested within 500 m of the nearest vineyard. Falcons in vineyard nests had higher feeding rates, higher nest attendance, and higher brooding rates. As chick age increased, parents in vineyard nests fed chicks a greater amount of total prey and larger prey items on average than did parents in hill nests. Parents with larger broods brought in larger prey items and a greater total sum of prey biomass. Nevertheless, chicks in nests containing siblings received less daily biomass per individual than single chicks. Some of these results can be attributed to the supplementary feeding of falcons in vineyards. However, even after removing supplementary food from our analysis, falcons in vineyards still fed larger prey items to chicks than did parents in hill nests, suggesting that the anthropogenic habitat may be a viable source of quality food. Although agricultural regions globally are rarely associated with raptor conservation, these results suggest that translocating New Zealand falcons into vineyards has potential for the conservation of this species.

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Proportion of the day that both adult falcons were in attendance at the nest as chick age increased in vineyard (dotted lines) and hill (solid lines) nests.Thin grey lines show the raw data for both parents combined, with +SEM for vineyard nests and the data mean –SEM for hill nests. Thick lines show the fitted values from a GLMM including significant second and third order polynomial terms for female falcons (black lines) and from a GLMM including significant second order polynomial terms for male falcons (dark grey lines).
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pone-0038679-g003: Proportion of the day that both adult falcons were in attendance at the nest as chick age increased in vineyard (dotted lines) and hill (solid lines) nests.Thin grey lines show the raw data for both parents combined, with +SEM for vineyard nests and the data mean –SEM for hill nests. Thick lines show the fitted values from a GLMM including significant second and third order polynomial terms for female falcons (black lines) and from a GLMM including significant second order polynomial terms for male falcons (dark grey lines).

Mentions: Nest attendance, the proportion of the day that at least one adult was present within the nest scrape (Table 3), was 3.3% lower for parents in hill nests than in vineyard nests (Table 3, Figure 3) and significantly decreased as chicks aged in both habitat types (Table 3, Figure 3). This relationship with age was nonlinear, with the rate of this decline tending to slow after chicks reached approximately 20 days old, and both polynomial terms for chick age were retained in the simplified model (Table 3, Figure 3). This effect was largely due to the behavior of female parents, which were responsible for the majority of nest attendance over the chick-rearing period (Table 3, Figure 3).


Translocation of threatened New Zealand falcons to vineyards increases nest attendance, brooding and feeding rates.

Kross SM, Tylianakis JM, Nelson XJ - PLoS ONE (2012)

Proportion of the day that both adult falcons were in attendance at the nest as chick age increased in vineyard (dotted lines) and hill (solid lines) nests.Thin grey lines show the raw data for both parents combined, with +SEM for vineyard nests and the data mean –SEM for hill nests. Thick lines show the fitted values from a GLMM including significant second and third order polynomial terms for female falcons (black lines) and from a GLMM including significant second order polynomial terms for male falcons (dark grey lines).
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3375302&req=5

pone-0038679-g003: Proportion of the day that both adult falcons were in attendance at the nest as chick age increased in vineyard (dotted lines) and hill (solid lines) nests.Thin grey lines show the raw data for both parents combined, with +SEM for vineyard nests and the data mean –SEM for hill nests. Thick lines show the fitted values from a GLMM including significant second and third order polynomial terms for female falcons (black lines) and from a GLMM including significant second order polynomial terms for male falcons (dark grey lines).
Mentions: Nest attendance, the proportion of the day that at least one adult was present within the nest scrape (Table 3), was 3.3% lower for parents in hill nests than in vineyard nests (Table 3, Figure 3) and significantly decreased as chicks aged in both habitat types (Table 3, Figure 3). This relationship with age was nonlinear, with the rate of this decline tending to slow after chicks reached approximately 20 days old, and both polynomial terms for chick age were retained in the simplified model (Table 3, Figure 3). This effect was largely due to the behavior of female parents, which were responsible for the majority of nest attendance over the chick-rearing period (Table 3, Figure 3).

Bottom Line: Parents with larger broods brought in larger prey items and a greater total sum of prey biomass.Some of these results can be attributed to the supplementary feeding of falcons in vineyards.Although agricultural regions globally are rarely associated with raptor conservation, these results suggest that translocating New Zealand falcons into vineyards has potential for the conservation of this species.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Biological Sciences, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand. Saramaekross@gmail.com

ABSTRACT
Anthropogenic landscapes can be rich in resources, and may in some cases provide potential habitat for species whose natural habitat has declined. We used remote videography to assess whether reintroducing individuals of the threatened New Zealand falcon Falco novaeseelandiae into a highly modified agricultural habitat affected the feeding rates of breeding falcons or related breeding behavior such as nest attendance and brooding rates. Over 2,800 recording hours of footage were used to compare the behavior of falcons living in six natural nests (in unmanaged, hilly terrain between 4 km and 20 km from the nearest vineyard), with that of four breeding falcon pairs that had been transported into vineyards and nested within 500 m of the nearest vineyard. Falcons in vineyard nests had higher feeding rates, higher nest attendance, and higher brooding rates. As chick age increased, parents in vineyard nests fed chicks a greater amount of total prey and larger prey items on average than did parents in hill nests. Parents with larger broods brought in larger prey items and a greater total sum of prey biomass. Nevertheless, chicks in nests containing siblings received less daily biomass per individual than single chicks. Some of these results can be attributed to the supplementary feeding of falcons in vineyards. However, even after removing supplementary food from our analysis, falcons in vineyards still fed larger prey items to chicks than did parents in hill nests, suggesting that the anthropogenic habitat may be a viable source of quality food. Although agricultural regions globally are rarely associated with raptor conservation, these results suggest that translocating New Zealand falcons into vineyards has potential for the conservation of this species.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus