rss_2.0Ornis Hungarica FeedSciendo RSS Feed for Ornis Hungarica Hungarica Feed of the Common Wood Pigeon in Southeast Hungary and its impact on the population of Eurasian Collared Dove<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The Common Wood Pigeon (<italic>Columba palumbus</italic> Linnaeus, 1758) has very large populations in the European cities. However, the urbanisation of the species in the Maros–Körös köze region (Maros–Körös Interfluve) is recent and is happening before our eyes. In our study, we summarized our observations on the urbanised populations of the species in the region. Populations of the species in populated areas are currently spreading rapidly in the Maros–Körös köze region. In the past, it was a breeding species in the landscape of suburban areas far from populated areas. In recent years, it has appeared in towns and villages. It did not gradually arrive from the outer area of the settlements towards the interior of populated areas, but it was precisely in the park areas of the centres of settlements that the first pairs in these areas appeared and spread outwards. During the study, we also surveyed the nesting populations of the Eurasian Collared Dove (<italic>Streptopelia decaocto</italic> [Frivaldszky, 1838]) in the sampling areas, using the same methodology, so that we could also examine the proportion of both urbanised species. The population of that species was decreasing during the study period. The pairs of Common Wood Pigeons were more common in the central, more parked parts of the settlements, while the Eurasian Collared Dove was mainly found in peripheral areas. The increase in the population of the Common Wood Pigeons will cause major problems for agriculture, for which there is no solution at present.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue of local climate on nest cavity characteristics of a North African endemic woodpecker<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Levaillant’s Woodpecker <italic>Picus vaillantii</italic> is a primary cavity nester, endemic to the forests of northern Africa, including the cedar forest in Aurès Mountains. This species, similar to all woodpeckers, is important for the integrity of ecosystems, especially as it provides nesting cavities and contributes to the availability of habitats for several secondary cavity nesters that cannot excavate their hollows. This work aim to characterise the Levaillant’s Woodpecker’s nest cavities and to test the effect of local climatic conditions on the size and orientation of these cavities. Surveys were carried out in the breeding seasons of 2018 and 2019 using the point count method to search for the nests. Based on nest measurements conducted on a total of 52 available nest cavities, our results reveal that entrances are dominated by round shapes (94.2%) as compared to oval shapes. The mean height and width values of the cavity entrances were found to be 7.26 ± 1.51 centimetres and 7.11 ± 1.44 centimetres. The depth of the internal chamber and its width were estimated to be 35.42 ± 7.82 centimetres and 17.95 ± 4.01 centimetres, respectively. Unlike the average values of the volumes of the internal chamber, those relating to the entrance area and orientation vary significantly according to altitude and climatic conditions. Indeed, when climbing towards the summits, the cavities widen and turn to the west-southwest. This behaviour of the Levaillant’s Woodpecker seems to help it to benefit from maximum sunshine at high altitudes and to avoid predators and competitors more abundant at medium or low altitudes.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue population dynamics of the Red-footed Falcon on the southwestern limit of its breeding range<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The western boundary of the Palearctic range of the Red-footed Falcon <italic>(Falco vespertinus)</italic> is located in the Carpathian Basin, with significant breeding areas in the northern part of Serbia, Voivodina Province. The size of the breeding population has been estimated and surveyed several times since the middle of the last century. The number of breeding pairs showed considerable variation, while estimates suggested a declining trend in the population size, though the dynamics of the Red-footed Falcon population was less known. This motivated us to perform censuses every year from 2000 until 2009. During that period, the number of confirmed breeding pairs varied from 61 to 179. We found that the number of breeding pairs decreased significantly (˃ 40%) after a 3-4 year of increase. The number of breeding sites and the extent of the distribution area changed in proportion to the increase or decrease of the population size. However, the change in population size was unrelated to the general proportion of pairs breeding in colonies (87–96%) and those breeding solitarily (4–13%).</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue inter-relationships between jaw musculature mass, skull size and body mass in<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Functional characteristics of the jaw apparatus, for example bite force, in vertebrates is a combination of the skeleton and the musculature. In birds, bite force has been measured directly or calculated using various methods including summation of forces generated by the different elements of the jaw musculature. However, there have been no reports of the relationships between body size with the mass of the different muscle groups in a closely related group of birds. This study explored allometry in the different jaw muscle masses from parrot (Psittaciformes) species differing in body mass by 40-fold. It was hypothesised that the different muscle masses would exhibit isometry with body mass and skull size. Parrot heads were dissected and the masses of the individual muscle complexes were recorded. Data were subjected to phylogenetically-controlled regression analysis to document scaling effects with body mass and skull size. Most, but not all muscles, exhibited positive allometry with body mass but most were isometric with skull size. Consequently, as parrots get bigger, their skulls get proportionally longer, but that the muscles within the head isometrically scaled relative to the size of these proportionally larger skulls. The large muscles imply greater bite forces in parrots than have been reported to date, which seems to be associated with an increase in skull size to accommodate more muscles. It is unknown whether this pattern is applicable to other birds within specific orders or even across birds as a whole. There needs to be further investigation into the allometry of the morphological and functional properties of the avian jaw musculature.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue of animal and plant in the diet of Woodcock ( L.) based on literature data<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Based on the results of dietary surveys of the Woodcock (<italic>Scolopax rusticola</italic> L.) in 11 countries (Great Britain, Scotland, France, Italy, Croatia, Germany, Hungary, Poland, Ukraine, Russia, and Romania), 63 taxa (42 animal and 21 plant) were detected in Woodcock gizzard contents, of which the predominant dietary components were of animal origin. The composition of the dietary components varies only within a narrow spectrum, adapting to seasonal changes in the insect fauna and the supply of the area. Earthworms (<italic>Lumbricus</italic> spp.) represent the dominant proportion, also with larvae of Dermaptera, Myriapoda, Coleoptera taxa, and Diplopoda and Araneidae species being present in significant numbers. The mass fraction of plant components (mainly weed seeds) is low, with occasional occurrence of vegetative plant parts. The narrow species range of animal taxa recorded and the low proportion of plant dietary components clearly indicate that the Woodcock is a specialist species, and the availability of a few major dietary component taxa groups are a limiting factor in case of the Woodcock. Therefore, it is a major determinant of the diurnal, seasonal and annual movement patterns.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue of so far undetermined bird remains from the Upper Miocene (MN13) of Polgárdi 4 and 5 (Fejér county, West Hungary)<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The authors have identified the mostly very fragmentary bird fossils from the uncatalogued material of the Hungarian Institute of Geology and Geophysics to the level that the condition of the bones allows. Almost half of the 102 bone pieces (42 fragments) could be completely or partially identified, while the rest (60 fragments represented either by bone fragments or by toe phalanges, claws, mandibles, etc.) could not be identified. The material identified includes taxa previously published and known from the site, but a good number of these are represented by other bones or parts of bones, as in previous publications (<italic>Palaeortyx phasianoides</italic> Milne-Edwards, 1869, <italic>Palaeocryptonix hungaricus</italic> Jánossy, 1991, <italic>Porzana † kretzoii</italic> Kessler, 2009, <italic>Glaucidium † baranensis</italic> Kessler, 2010, <italic>Apus † baranensis</italic> Jánossy, 1977, <italic>Lullula † minor</italic> Kessler, 2013, <italic>Delichon † polgardiensis</italic> Kessler, 2013, <italic>Riparia † major</italic> Kessler, 2013, <italic>Sitta † gracilis</italic> Kessler, 2013). The taxa identified at order, family or genus level are listed in the main text and complemented by one figure, as well as a rich bibliographic material.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue monitoring improves nest detection of Squacco Herons , but fails to assess its productivity<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>In the last decade, the use of drones has proven to be the major innovation for studying various aspects of waterbird breeding biology, overcoming the environmental obstacles inherent in monitoring their breeding sites. The Squacco Heron <italic>(Ardeola ralloides)</italic> represents an example of the aforementioned difficulties, since it nests in impenetrable reed beds and nearby bushes, trees and shrubs. The present work reports the results of drone assessment of nest counting and reproductive success of the Squacco Heron in a colony in the Po Delta (NE Italy). At the beginning of the breeding season, far more nests (46) were found using drones than by eye from the nearest embankment (12). After four weeks (estimated hatching period), only ten nests were relocated by drone, due to vegetation overgrowth. All relocated nests were placed directly either within reed beds or on lower branches of shrubs, but always without higher branches obstructing the view from above. Finally, in the fledging period, no nest was relocated on drone imagery, due to further vegetation growth. Only 27 juveniles were found by drone, mostly perching on the canopy, without any evidence of nest failure, suggesting a critical underestimation. In conclusion, drone use improves accuracy of counting nesting Squacco Herons, but fails to assess productivity.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue acoustic communication of the Eurasian Green Woodpecker<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Woodpeckers, having a fairly well-defined range of acoustic signals, offer a valuable opportunity to link acoustic repertoires to behavioural observations. Instrumental and vocal sounds from more than 70 individual Eurasian Green Woodpeckers were analysed using 305 sound recordings. Eighteen separate acoustic signals are described, together with field observations of associated behaviour. Sixteen are illustrated by clear spectrograms supporting the phonetic descriptions. With one exception, calls consisted of repeated elements, with the first element often containing varying degrees of emphasis. Variation within call types, especially the advertising call, differentiated individuals and their motivation and did not appear to be regionally significant. Instrumental signals, while soft and easily overlooked, constituted an important intimate communication between breeding pairs.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue species for the avifauna of adjoining coastal areas of Purba Medinipur district, West Bengal, India<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>To upgrade the known avifaunal assemblages of adjoining coastal areas of Purba Medinipur district, West Bengal, India, opportunistic survey were carried out during January 2020 to August 2022. The survey yielded additions of 36 bird species in 10 orders and 17 families to the coastal area of Purba Medinipur district, based on photographic evidences. Among these recorded birds, 30 species were classified as Least Concern, two species were Near Threatened <italic>(Aythya nyroca, Calidris canutus)</italic>, one species was Vulnerable <italic>(Aythya ferina)</italic>, two species were Endangered <italic>(Calidris tenuirostris, Rynchops albicollis)</italic> and one species was Not Assessed <italic>(Porphyrio poliocephalus)</italic>. Details of all the records are given here.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue population change using ’citizen science’ data: case study of the Hungarian White Stork population between 1999 and 2021<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>In Hungary, changes in the White Stork population are monitored using two methods that involve a large number of volunteers: nest surveys since 1941, and since 1999 within the framework of the Common Bird Monitoring Scheme (MMM) programme. In our article, we briefly present the results of the nest survey data between 1999 and 2021, the population trend calculated on the basis of them, and the comparison of the latter with the trends shown by the MMM programme, which – among other species – counts all stork individuals on 2.5×2.5 km sample areas. Both sets of data show a decreasing trend, but there is a significant difference between them, which may be partly due to the inaccuracies of the nest database, considering the fact that the MMM also counts non-breeding adult and immature individuals. However, both methods have the characteristics that make them suitable for monitoring population trends.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue of climate variables on the White Stork ( L.) productivity in a long term study<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>We analysed the effects of weather and climatic patterns on the productivity of the White Stork in Hungary between 1958 and 2017, using i) linear mixed effect models (LMM), ii) LMM-s extended by a single random effect variable or a nested combination; iii) LMM-s extended by a single fixed effect variable and iv) using an additive model of the selected variables. As a preselection, the following climatic variables were identified with substantial support: March mean temperature, March precipitation, April mean temperature, June mean temperature, June precipitation (negative), July mean temperature. The slight increase of the mean number of fledged chicks over 59 years could be the result of the increasing mean temperature, but in itself it might not be strong enough to prove that climate change will overall benefit White Stork productivity. Higher temperature and precipitation values are favourable, probably because of the higher biomass, providing more prey, but high precipitation is unfavourable until the thermoregulation of chicks is not developed. Decreasing amounts of precipitation may cause loss of wetlands as suitable feeding sites. Extreme weather is important to complement the picture given by climate change.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue new species for Algeria, White-throated Bee-eater observations of probably escaped individuals of Cutthroat Finch and Village Indigobird and a checklist of southern Sahara birds<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>In this paper we present a report about the birds of the southern part of the Algerian Sahara. A total of 62 species were recorded with direct observations in nine different localities of two regions (from Tamanrasset city to In Guezzam city), belonging to 29 families and 12 orders in 2021. Three species were recorded for the first time in Algeria, White-throated Bee-eater <italic>(Merops albicollis),</italic> Cut-throat Finch <italic>(Amadina fasciata)</italic> and Village Indigobird <italic>(Vidua chalybeata)</italic>. The latter two were probably escaped from captivity. The House Sparrow <italic>(Passer domesticus)</italic> were observed for the first time in this region.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue different isolation distances in woodpecker territory mapping in Central Hungary<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Woodpeckers as cavity excavators are crucial in forest ecosystems, therefore, it is important to study their ecological needs, specifically at the territory scale, using mapping methodologies, of which there are uncertainties considering detection probabilities and the distances of the territory centres in different species and habitats. We studied the effects of the number of visits and isolation distance on detected woodpecker territories in the 1,000 ha forest mosaic of the Peszér forest in Central Hungary. We made territory mapping in 2020 along existing trails and forest roads on the present woodpecker species as Black, Eurasian Green, Great Spotted, Middle Spotted, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker and Eurasian Wryneck. We found a very low detection probability for single territories during one visit, while with the increasing number of visits it is more unlikely to overlook territories. Considering the isolation distances, by lowering the distance, more territories can be registered, which suggests that researchers should take great care choosing the proper distance for a given species whilst avoiding the over- or underestimation of territories.</p> <p>This paper has an actuality as BirdLife Hungary announced the Eurasian Green Woodpecker as the Bird of the Year in 2022, for drawing attention to this species’ habitat preferences and conservation.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue captures and low apparent survival rates in two tit species in western Hungary<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Adult and juvenile survival are important factors affecting the population dynamics of small passerines. Understanding variation in the population dynamics and survival rates is critical for ecological studies and nature conservation. The aim of this study was to investigate the annual capture-recapture, apparent survival and capture probabilities of the Blue Tit <italic>Cyanistes caeruleus</italic> and the Great Tit <italic>Parus major</italic> occurring in western Hungary. Data from 8,628 Blue Tits and 7,727 Great Tits came from a constant-effort ringing scheme, using three ringing periods, spanning 24 years (1998 to 2021). The annual captures did not show a significant linear trend from 1998 to 2021 in the study site for both tit species. The temporal variation of annual captures and the annual capture-recapture proportions of different ages and sexes of the tit species were similar. This indicated that the migration strategies of these two partial migrant species did not differ significantly. According to the best standard Cormack-Jolly-Seber model, apparent survival of first-year birds was lower than that for adults. The CJS model selection for the dataset indicated that the time and sex had no effect on apparent survival probabilities for both tit species. Capture probability in the juvenile groups was not significantly higher than that in the adult groups for both species.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue Wilson’s Phalarope population and feeding activity at Lake Titicaca<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>A population estimation of Wilson’s Phalaropes was conducted in the Confinada Lagoon of the inner bay of Lake Titicaca in the city of Puno between August and May of 2016/2017, 2017/2018 and 2018/2019. We employed the quadrat method of population estimation with three repetitions using 10×50 mm binoculars between 06:00 and 08:00 h. We recorded population fluctuations in August and September (immigration season) and April and May (emigration season). We counted a maximum population of 112,000 Wilson’s Phalaropes during the immigration season, and then in the emigration season. During their stay of approximately 8 months, the birds feed on water fleas, insects and detritus amounted to 146,496 t. The inner bay of Lake Titicaca is an important aquatic habitat for these migratory birds, which has a positive impact on the contribution to the decontamination of the lake.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue use of wintering Eurasian Tree Sparrows in a semi-urban area: a radiotelemetry-based case study<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Space use, which includes the home range and habitat utilisation pattern of individuals for different activities (e.g. foraging, roosting), is one of the fundamental aspects of a species ecology. Hence, knowledge on the different aspects of space use in general is essential to understand the relationship between species and their habitat. Here, we investigated the home range size (using the minimum convex polygon method; MCP) and roosting site selection, using radiotelemetry, in a sedentary passerine species, the Eurasian Tree Sparrows <italic>(Passer montanus)</italic>. The study was carried out during the non-breeding period (i.e. wintering), in a semi-urban habitat where supplemental feeding was also available. We found that individuals had highly variable home ranges, both in shape and size (mean ± SD of 95% MCP: 6.89 ± 5.73 ha), the location of which was influenced by the presence of bird feeders. Roosting sites of the tracked individuals were largely consistent at an individual level, that is, all birds used the same locations for roosting during the whole tracking period, and the roosting sites of all individuals were located on buildings, except for a few rare occasions. Our results suggest that urbanised habitats can provide multiple benefits for the individuals during the winter in the form of easily accessible resources (e.g. food, roosting place), and individuals readily exploit these resources by adjusting their space use according to their availability.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue and “bird-habitat” relationship in the cedar forest of Aurès mountain (Eastern Algeria)<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>This work aims to compile the birds breeding in the cedar forest of Aurès and to study the “Bird – Habitat” relationships. The data was collected using the progressive frequency sampling method that served as the basis for the diagnosis build on an analytical approach designed around three tools (mutual information, ecological profiles, modelling). Information theory tools allowed us to identify the indicator values of species as well as the most important descriptors. Habitat modelling has been prepared for species with a high indicator value. The logistic models are shown to be well adapted to the nature of the ornithological data. They related the occurrences of the species with the dendro-ecological descriptors. The 70 surveys carried out enabled us to identify 32 bird species. The ecological analysis revealed the most active descriptors and the species with high indicator value. The best-fitting models are those of Short-toed Treecreeper with positive effect of dead wood, density of trees and variability of distances between trees, and European Robin with negative effect of anthropization and general coverage, and positive effect of crown parametres. We conclude that promoting forest structural complexity by diversifying management regimes will be key to maintain avian biodiversity in cedar forests.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue and demographic trend of Algerian Nuthatch population of Mount Babor forest in Babor-Tababort National Park<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Summary</title> <p>The Algerian Nuthatch <italic>(Sitta ledanti)</italic> is the only bird species endemic to Algeria and it’s a protected species by the Algerian law since 1983. So far, we have no precise information on recent changes in population density as well as the demographic trends of this endangered species in its entire range in the Kabylia of Babors. The population of the species in the Babor-Tababort National Park remains the most abundant, with 275 individuals recorded in 2020. Thirty-eight years after the 1982 census, it multiplied with an annual multiplication rate of (λ) = 1.01 and grew with an annual growth rate of r = 1.36%. The Algerian Nuthatch has been present throughout the Mount Babor forest from 1,300 m altitude to the summit at 2,004 m altitude. The Algerian Nuthatch, in 2020, was more abundant in the mixed cedar forest because this type of forest covers the largest area in Mount Babor. The population of the species in the Mount Babor forest remains isolated that, however, could be connected to the population in the Tababort forest through the setting of an ecological corridor.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue of avian locomotion in water – an overview of swimming styles<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Adaptation to an aquatic lifestyle occurred in the evolution of several primarily terrestrial clades of tetrapods. Among these lineages, aquatic birds’ adaptations differ in many ways from other secondarily aquatic vertebrates. As a consequence of the evolution of flight, birds with swimming and diving abilities represent unique locomotion skills and complex anatomical solutions. Here we attempt to overview some of the main aspects of avian locomotion in water and highlight the diversity of their aquatic habits and locomotion types, with the best-known extinct and extant examples. The main features that can distinguish the different groups among these swimmers and divers are their different techniques to overcome buoyancy, the transformation of wings or hind limbs into aquatic propulsive organs, and their swimming techniques besides the presence or absence of the flying and/or terrestrial abilities. Understanding how the musculoskeletal system of aquatic birds evolved to face the requirements of moving in various environments with different physical characteristics provides a good opportunity to get a better view of convergent and divergent evolution.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue on parental care of the Eurasian Spoonbill during the post-fledging dispersal<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The number of available publications on the post-fledging parental care of wading birds (herons, ibises, spoonbills, and storks) and many other bird species is limited. In this study, I summarised the available knowledge collated from the observations of the Eurasian Spoonbills <italic>(Platalea leucorodia)</italic> in Hungary. A part of the available data is based on observations of colour-ringed individuals. The latest feeding event of a young by its parent was observed at Lake Csaj on 5 October 2020. The youngsters were being fed by their parents for 43 days (observed maximum) during the post-fledging dispersal. However, I estimated that this behaviour could even last for as long as 53 days. The parents lead (care for) their yearlings for 51 days (observed maximum), again I estimated that it could potentially last for a longer period of 63 days. The estimated length of parental care and feeding period could be longer or a little bit shorter during the post-fledging dispersal because it was not possible to follow the life of the families exactly. During parental care (feeding and leading of chicks), the majority of the colour-ringed Spoonbills were observed 2–26 km to the natal colonies of yearlings and the breeding colonies of the adults. However, on some occasions, they were 111–145 km far from those colonies. During the post-fledging dispersal, Spoonbills care for their chicks for a longer time than the European breeding heron species. A possible reason could be that the bills of young Spoonbills are not appropriate for fishing effectively at the beginning of fledging because of their shorter length and their less efficient hydrodynamic effect during lateral sweeping. Another reason could be that Spoonbills are tactile foragers and need more time to learn fishing. Based on data of a juvenile followed by a GPS device, learning the migration route and stop-over sites from parents or experienced adults could be important for Spoonbills, otherwise, young migrating alone with no accomplished individuals may not find the optimal routes and the proper stop-over areas. In the case of Spoonbills, we still do not know exactly the features of parental care during the post-fledging dispersal and have even less data on it during the migration. Thus, I request potential observers along the Adriatic Flyway to record the observations of parent-offspring interactions (feeding by parents, begging) particularly the Hungarian colour-ringed adults and/or young individuals and send data to the author’s e-mail address.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue