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Volume 63, Issue 2


Timing of breeding, habitat preference and reproductive success of marsh harriers (Circus aeruginosus)

Iva Němečková / Vojtěch Mrlík / Pavel Drozd
Published Online: 2008-03-27 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/s11756-008-0030-2


During 2002–2005 we analyzed Lack’s Hypothesis about the timing of the breeding of marsh harriers (Circus aeruginosus) in the Poodří to the breeding period and preference of heterogeneous habitat. An analysis of 43 nests revealed quantitative differences. Birds which started breeding earlier, reached significantly higher reproductive success than later breeding birds regardless of nesting habitat (P = 0.003, n nests = 43). Even when the birds invested into their offspring the same way, their breeding success was not always the same. When the females nested in the common reed (Phragmites communis), they reached higher reproductive output than females nesting in cattail (Typha sp.) (P = 0.01, n cattail = 18, n common reed = 25). The habitat of the common reed is characterized by higher and denser vegetation cover than cattail vegetation (P < 0.001, n measurements = 174 for both variables).

Keywords: timing of breeding; marsh harrier; reproductive parameters; vegetation cover; Poodří PLA

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About the article

Published Online: 2008-03-27

Published in Print: 2008-04-01

Citation Information: Biologia, Volume 63, Issue 2, Pages 261–265, ISSN (Online) 1336-9563, ISSN (Print) 0006-3088, DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/s11756-008-0030-2.

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© 2008 Slovak Academy of Sciences. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 License. BY-NC-ND 3.0

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