Combined effects of climate change and fluctuating habitat quality on the distribution of ducks in southern Europe
2016 (English)In: 7th North American Duck Symposium: waterfowl ecology and adaptive management, 2016Conference paper, Abstract (Refereed)
Changes in waterfowl ranges over the last decades are increasingly reported, both in North America and in Europe. The relative importance of different winter quarters may fluctuate under the influence of changing local habitat conditions, as well as according to general trends caused by global climate change. Several European duck species have shifted their winter range to the North-East, i.e. the distance between breeding and wintering grounds was reduced, in a pattern consistent with a global temperature increase. In northern countries, this could also indicate an increasing proportion of sedentary birds. We compared the geographic distribution of recoveries of bands fitted to Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) and Common Teal (A. crecca) in Camargue, southern France, over the last 60 years. Close to 75,000 ducks were banded since the early 1950s. Band recoveries occurred to a much greater extent in the Camargue area than in other parts of the flyways during the last decade compared to earlier years: as opposed to earlier studies, recoveries of Camargue-ringed ducks are increasingly made to the South-West. For migratory Teal, this indicates an increased faithfulness to the Camargue winter quarter. For Mallard, though, some birds may have become around-the-year residents: while the distance from banding site to recovery location was >400 km between the 1950s and 1970s, it is <75 km nowadays. Several hypotheses are proposed to explain these changes in European duck distributions. Survival analyses are also carried out, which help assessing whether changes in geographic distribution have also translated into altered demographic rates. Besides the overriding effects of climate change in the long-term, the present results suggest that local habitat management practices still have the potential to greatly affect the distribution of waterfowl.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:hkr:diva-16060OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hkr-16060DiVA: diva2:971950
7th North American Duck Symposium, Annapolis, MD, 2-5 February 2016