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Volume 30 (2022): Edition 1 (June 2022)

Volume 29 (2021): Edition 2 (December 2021)

Volume 29 (2021): Edition 1 (June 2021)

Volume 28 (2020): Edition 2 (December 2020)

Volume 28 (2020): Edition 1 (June 2020)

Volume 27 (2019): Edition 2 (December 2019)

Volume 27 (2019): Edition 1 (June 2019)

Volume 26 (2018): Edition 2 (December 2018)

Volume 26 (2018): Edition 1 (June 2018)

Volume 25 (2017): Edition 2 (December 2017)

Volume 25 (2017): Edition 1 (June 2017)

Volume 24 (2016): Edition 2 (December 2016)

Volume 24 (2016): Edition 1 (June 2016)

Volume 23 (2015): Edition 2 (December 2015)

Volume 23 (2015): Edition 1 (June 2015)

Volume 22 (2014): Edition 2 (December 2014)

Volume 22 (2014): Edition 1 (June 2014)

Volume 21 (2013): Edition 2 (December 2013)

Volume 21 (2013): Edition 1 (June 2013)

Volume 20 (2012): Edition 2 (December 2012)

Volume 20 (2012): Edition 1 (June 2012)

Détails du magazine
Format
Magazine
eISSN
2061-9588
Première publication
08 Oct 2013
Période de publication
2 fois par an
Langues
Anglais

Chercher

Volume 30 (2022): Edition 1 (June 2022)

Détails du magazine
Format
Magazine
eISSN
2061-9588
Première publication
08 Oct 2013
Période de publication
2 fois par an
Langues
Anglais

Chercher

15 Articles
Accès libre

The status of the European Stonechat (Saxicola rubicola) in Hungary: a review

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 1 - 20

Résumé

Abstract

In 2021, the European Stonechat (Saxicola rubicola) became the ‘Bird of The Year’ in Hungary, which makes it very timely to summarise our knowledge about the status of the species in the country and to emphasise conservation priorities.

In Hungary, the species is a common, widespread breeder of dry roadside grass strips, abandoned ploughlands, bushy slopes and vineyards. It is most likely in the arid habitats between the Danube and Tisza and east of the Tisza. The largest populations also breed in these regions. The Hungarian population was estimated at 195,000–210,000 pairs between 2014 and 2018. The breeding population halved between 1999 and 2018, though it was stable until 2004. The breeding period begins from late March to early April and lasts until the end of July. First males arrive in February, and spring migration peaks in early March. Autumn migration peaks in late September. Few may overwinter. The number of birds ringed in Hungary since 1951 is 13,484, of which 1,401 were juvenile. Three birds ringed in Hungary were found abroad (Italy 2, Greece 1), and two specimens marked abroad (Croatia, Italy) were found in Hungary. The oldest bird was recaptured 1679 days after its ringing day in Hungary. The average body mass of juveniles increased significantly for both sexes by an average of 0.9 grams over 22 years. In the case of all age and sex groups, the average body mass increased during the autumn season. The average wing length of adults also increased during the autumn. The arrival time of either sex during spring migration did not change significantly between 1999 and 2020. In the case of all age and sex groups, the arrival time shifted later in autumn migration. The European Stonechat belongs to the red list category Near Threatened in Hungary.

Mots clés

  • trend of populations
  • ringing results
  • migration
  • dispersion
  • conservation
Accès libre

Higher level taxonomy affects body mass and femur length as predictors for egg size in birds

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 21 - 29

Résumé

Abstract

Interpretation of fossil material using comparative anatomy often relies on relationships predicted from data collected from extant species. Some years ago, it was suggested that femur length of birds could be predicted from egg mass but this relationship was counter-intuitive because egg mass is usually related to a measure of body size. The original analysis was also not phylogenetically controlled. This study used the same data to determine phylogenetically controlled relationships for body mass versus egg mass, and egg mass versus femur length. Further analysis showed that order was important in the prediction of egg mass from either body mass or femur length. For some orders, the single regression estimate through all data significantly over-, or under-estimated egg mass. This problem was more pronounced for femur length compared with body mass. Extrapolation of the relationship between femur length and egg mass for large extinct birds seemed to be provide useful data for the Gastornithidae but under-estimated egg mass for other large bird species of a variety of families. Use of equations derived from extant birds to gain insight into the reproductive biology of extinct species needs to be undertaken with great care.

Mots clés

  • bird order
  • body mass
  • egg mass
  • femur length
  • giant birds
  • phylogeny
Accès libre

Trends of avian locomotion in water – an overview of swimming styles

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 30 - 46

Résumé

Abstract

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.

Mots clés

  • locomotion
  • swimming
  • diving
  • aquatic birds
  • ecomorphology
  • evolution
Accès libre

Presentation of so far undetermined bird remains from the Pliocene of Beremend 26 and Csarnóta 2 and 4 (Baranya county, South Hungary)

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 47 - 68

Résumé

Abstract

The authors have defined at the order, subfamily, family or genus level the very fragmentary and small-size bird bone material from the three Pliocene-age sites in southern Hungary (Beremend 26, Csarnóta 2 and 4), which is in the collection of the Museum of the Hungarian Institute of Geology and Geophysics. The non-catalogued bone fragments remaining from the already examined material were identified. The number of taxa identified is 26, of which one species is new to science. The new species (Pliogallus csarnotanus n. sp.) belongs to a hitherto disputed genus, which is thus recognised through the newly defined material. Of the rest of the material, only Paleocryptonix hungaricus Jánossy, 1991 and Glaucidium baranensis Kessler, 2010 have been identified to species level, the Gallinula, Porzana, Merops, Garrulus, Nucifraga finds to genus level, while the other 18 taxa have been identified only to subfamily or family level (Perdicinae, Columbidae, Alaudidae, Hirundinidae, Panuridae, Paridae, Sittidae, Certhiidae, Muscicapidae, Turdidae, Sylviidae, Motacillidae, Prunellidae, Laniidae, Sturnidae and Fringillidae), or only to order level (Charadriiformes, Coraciiformes).

Mots clés

  • Beremend
  • Csarnóta
  • Pliocene
  • Hungary
  • birds
  • fossils
Accès libre

“Leucism resulting in xanthochroism” – A report on colour aberration in Coppersmith Barbet Psilopogon haemacephalus from Asia

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 69 - 79

Résumé

Abstract

Plumage colouration is important for birds as it helps them in camouflage, mate selection, social signalling and various other physiological and behavioural processes. The most common pigments responsible for colouration are melanins and carotenoids. In a few individuals, colouration is disrupted due to various causes. The most common colour aberrations found in birds are leucism, albinism, melanism, carotenism, schizochroism and dilution whereas xanthochroism is a lesser-known phenomenon. In this article, five records of colour aberrant Coppersmith Barbet Psilopogon haemocephalus are reported. The authors along with the help of citizen scientists observed four individuals with disruptions in plumage colouration from different areas of West Bengal and Assam, India and one from Rajsahi, Bangladesh. Due to the lack of melanins, the birds were mostly yellowish and whitish in colouration with or without some normally coloured feathers on the head and wings. The carotenoid deposition was unaffected in the case of the observed adults and juveniles. These records can be cited as xanthochroistic individuals resulting from leucism. This is the first record of such colour aberration for Coppersmith Barbet from the whole of its distribution range.

Mots clés

  • xanthochroism
  • carotenoids
  • melanin
  • Megalaimadae
  • India
  • Bangladesh
Accès libre

The current status of Chukar (Alectoris chukar J. E. Gray, 1830) in Armenia

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 80 - 96

Résumé

Abstract

The Chukar Alectoris chukar is one of the most popular game birds of Armenia, but there is no governmental monitoring programme for that exploited species. We carried out national surveys in 2003–2019 and estimate the current occupied range of the Chukar in Armenia as 5,082 km2 (17% of the country). In 2019, we estimate Chukar population size at 12,472 breeding pairs (95% CL: 10,266–14,677). Its population trend shows a moderate decline underlying strong annual fluctuations. In Armenia, the Chukar occurs on 20 public hunting lands covering 2,414 km2 in total. Its abundance on these public hunting lands is estimated to 5,558 breeding pairs in 2019 (95% CL: 3,656–7,460). Surveys of the seven Hunters’ Unions of Armenia found that there are 10,000 to 20,000 active hunters. The number of hunting permits issued annually increased ten-fold between 2016 and 2019, exceeding the capacity of the public hunting lands in 2019. A hunter survey found that each Chukar hunter shot on average (± SD) 5.88±3.05 birds in the 2018/19 season, which extrapolates to 17,052–34,104 shot specimens of Chukar (at least 46% of autumn numbers). Current hunting management practice is thus unsustainable and we provide recommendations for sustainable approaches that should replace it urgently.

Mots clés

  • game birds
  • distribution
  • population
  • hunting
  • management
Accès libre

Sacred green spaces in semi-urban areas sustain more birds than its adjacent areas: A study from lower Gangetic plains, West Bengal, India

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 97 - 112

Résumé

Abstract

With rapid urban expansion and flourishing real estate sector, remaining green patches in many sub-urban/peri-urban areas are facing immense threat and/or being destroyed. We therefore, explored the avian abundance and richness of green spaces around temples (sacred sites) and compared them with adjoining green spaces without religious places (control sites). The species richness and abundance in sacred sites (12.16 ± 0.65 species; 25.54 ± 1.176 individuals) was significantly higher than control sites (6.31 ± 0.77 species; 20.04 ± 1.4 individuals). The compositions of avian communities of sacred sites were significantly different and the presence of temple positively influenced the species richness. GLMM also revealed that the species richness was positively influenced by the distance to building and tree cover area and not influenced by distance to road, areas of water body, bare land. Our findings indicate that the green spaces around the sacred places have greater avian diversity in semi-urban areas, and could be prioritized for the conservation of avian diversity. Generating local support could be relatively easier due to traditional, religious and/or cultural belief against tree felling around the places of worship.

Mots clés

  • Avifauna
  • Species richness
  • Sacred
  • green spaces
  • urbanization
Accès libre

Distribution and demographic trend of Algerian Nuthatch (Sitta ledanti) population of Mount Babor forest in Babor-Tababort National Park

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 113 - 125

Résumé

Mots clés

  • Algerian Nuthatch
  • Babor-Tababort National Park
  • distribution
  • growth
  • habitat
Accès libre

Threat status assessment and conservation recommendations for Ibisbill in Kashmir Himalaya

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 126 - 134

Résumé

Abstract

The concern that population decline in wild species may lead to disruptions in the ecosystems has triggered numerous ecological studies across the globe. Therefore, monitoring biodiversity plays a key role in identifying priority species for evaluating the effectiveness of conservation measures. Ibisbill (Ibidorhyncha struthersii) is a habitat-specialist wader inhabiting high-altitude river rapids with cobbles, boulders and moderate flow of water in Asia. This study aimed to empirically assess the conservation and threat status of Ibisbill in the Kashmir Himalayan region (NW India). The species qualified as Endangered in the study region according to criterion B2 (area of occupancy < 500 km2) of the IUCN Red List categories and criteria. Moreover, six priority sites for the conservation of Ibisbill were identified during extended field surveys in River Sindh, Kashmir, NW India. Threats faced by the Ibisbill along the priority sites were also recorded. Out of six sites, mining, livestock grazing and vehicle movement was observed at three sites, human interference including tourism activity at five sites and predation was observed at four sites. The results of this study suggest several conservation recommendations which need to be implemented to ensure the long-term persistence of the species.

Mots clés

  • priority sites
  • disturbance
  • conservation
  • threat status
  • Himalaya
  • IUCN
Accès libre

Genetic polymorphism in the mitochondrial D-loop of Oriental White-backed Vultures (Gyps bengalensis)

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 135 - 145

Résumé

Abstract

Vultures are among nature’s most successful scavengers, providing tractable models for ecological, economic, and cultural studies. Asian vultures have undergone dramatic declines of 90–99% in the subcontinent due to consequences of poisoning drugs, thereby being at a high risk of extinction. In Pakistan, surveys conducted previously focused mostly the cause of decline and breeding strategies only. Genetic profiling of vultures was still unmapped that could play a particular role in conservation endeavors and let researchers to genetically label individuals of threatened or endangered species. In this study, we examined genetic diversity and molecular phylogeny of Oriental White-backed Vultures by analyzing mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequences. Genetic polymorphism was detected among individuals, and, on that basis, phylogenetic analysis was conducted through Bayesian analysis of DNA sequences using MCMC. Using multiple sequence alignment, two mutations, transversion T>G and transition G>A, were observed at nucleotide positions 1 and 2, respectively. Similarly, T/C heterozygosity at two positions, 53 and 110, and one heterozygous T/G locus at 130 position were also observed. The reference sequence, along with other samples of V1, V6, V7 and V9, was placed into a clade, while V2, V5, V11, V3, V4 and V10 samples were grouped into a two clade.

Mots clés

  • vulture
  • phylogenetics
  • mitochondrial D-loop
  • Pakistan
Accès libre

Observations on parental care of the Eurasian Spoonbill (Platalea leucorodia) during the post-fledging dispersal

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 146 - 157

Résumé

Abstract

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 (Platalea leucorodia) 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.

Mots clés

  • parental feeding
  • begging
  • parental leading
  • post-fledging dispersal and migration
  • Threskiornithidae
  • colour-ringing
Accès libre

A comparative study on the nesting materials used by House Sparrow (Passer domesticus) for Open and Inbox nests

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 158 - 169

Résumé

Abstract

House Sparrow (Passer domesticus) is a bird species connected to humans, widely distributed in most of the human settlements. They build nests in the crevices of our homes. The recent changes in house design minimized the crevices to build the nests and lead to habitat loss. The nest boxes are the alternative ways to re-establish the decreased House Sparrow population. We investigated the usage of nesting materials by House Sparrow with reference to construction of Open nests and Inbox nests in our study area. Because of its flexible attitude, it utilizes all the available materials for nest construction. In our study area at Jangareddigudem, we have examined about 100 Inbox nests and 40 Open nests. There are around 29 varieties of nesting materials used by Sparrows in the examined Inbox nests and around 27 varieties in the Open nests. Dūrvā grass found to be the major component of all the analyzed nesting materials in both Open and Inbox nests that constituted 43% and 36.5% respectively. The other structural materials such as coconut fibre (3.5%) and broom fibre (6%) were found to be more in Inbox nests. Synthetic fibre was more in Open nests (3.7%). We found significant differences between the Open and Inbox nests with respect to quantum of each nesting material type used, weight of the nests and time taken for nest construction by House Sparrow.

Mots clés

  • House Sparrow
  • nesting materials
  • nest boxes
  • Inbox nests
  • Open nests
Accès libre

Substrate influences foraging selection by Eurasian Green Woodpeckers Picus viridis in autumn and winter: observations in Hungary over a 20-year period

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 173 - 178

Résumé

Abstract

The foraging behaviour and habitat use of the Eurasian Green Woodpecker Picus viridis at various sites in Hungary over a 20-year period was documented. Detailed observations were recorded on foraging behaviour at hard substrates; in quarries, cliffs and human made structures of brick and stone construction. Using Chi-square tests on the frequency of observations of birds at hard substrates foraging sites, we compared usage during periods of snow cover and those without. Birds were found to be more frequently observed at hard substrates during periods of snow cover because these remained largely free of snow. We supposed that this response was due to invertebrate prey becoming increasingly scarce generally across typical foraging sites, i.e. grasslands and meadows during harsh winter conditions. Accessibility to the alternative sites became important as a source of food because availability of prey was more reliable. Vertical surfaces of hard substrates such as those associated with quarries, cliffs and buildings may be important to sustain Eurasian Green Woodpeckers in periods of snow cover where these provide a valuable foraging resource.

Mots clés

  • woodpecker
  • foraging
  • terrestrial-feeding
  • snow-cover
  • substrate
  • ants
Accès libre

Multi-species settlement by secondary hollow-nesting passerine birds in a European Bee-eater (Merops apiaster) colony

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 179 - 188

Résumé

Abstract

Simultaneous nesting of six species of secondary hollow-nesting passerine birds in abandoned European Bee-eater Merops apiaster nest-holes has been detected and described. The holes were occupied by Great Tit Parus major, Spotted Flycatcher Muscicapa striata, European Pied Flycatcher Ficedula hypoleuca, Black Redstart Phoenicurus ochruros, Eurasian Tree Sparrow Passer montanus and White Wagtail Motacilla alba, which formed a multi-species settlement in a European Bee-eater colony.

Mots clés

  • nest holes
Accès libre

Insect ectoparasites of the Red-backed Shrike Lanius collurio in the Iberian Peninsula

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 189 - 193

Résumé

Abstract

Of the 26 Red-backed Shrike (Lanius collurio) sampled with the aim of characterizing insect ectoparasites, five birds were parasitized by louse flies. Two species were identified, Ornithophila metallica and Ornithomya fringillina. The first species is reported for the first time in the Red-backed Shrike, and the second represents a new host association in the Iberian Peninsula.

Mots clés

  • bird
  • louse flies
  • passerine
  • Spain
15 Articles
Accès libre

The status of the European Stonechat (Saxicola rubicola) in Hungary: a review

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 1 - 20

Résumé

Abstract

In 2021, the European Stonechat (Saxicola rubicola) became the ‘Bird of The Year’ in Hungary, which makes it very timely to summarise our knowledge about the status of the species in the country and to emphasise conservation priorities.

In Hungary, the species is a common, widespread breeder of dry roadside grass strips, abandoned ploughlands, bushy slopes and vineyards. It is most likely in the arid habitats between the Danube and Tisza and east of the Tisza. The largest populations also breed in these regions. The Hungarian population was estimated at 195,000–210,000 pairs between 2014 and 2018. The breeding population halved between 1999 and 2018, though it was stable until 2004. The breeding period begins from late March to early April and lasts until the end of July. First males arrive in February, and spring migration peaks in early March. Autumn migration peaks in late September. Few may overwinter. The number of birds ringed in Hungary since 1951 is 13,484, of which 1,401 were juvenile. Three birds ringed in Hungary were found abroad (Italy 2, Greece 1), and two specimens marked abroad (Croatia, Italy) were found in Hungary. The oldest bird was recaptured 1679 days after its ringing day in Hungary. The average body mass of juveniles increased significantly for both sexes by an average of 0.9 grams over 22 years. In the case of all age and sex groups, the average body mass increased during the autumn season. The average wing length of adults also increased during the autumn. The arrival time of either sex during spring migration did not change significantly between 1999 and 2020. In the case of all age and sex groups, the arrival time shifted later in autumn migration. The European Stonechat belongs to the red list category Near Threatened in Hungary.

Mots clés

  • trend of populations
  • ringing results
  • migration
  • dispersion
  • conservation
Accès libre

Higher level taxonomy affects body mass and femur length as predictors for egg size in birds

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 21 - 29

Résumé

Abstract

Interpretation of fossil material using comparative anatomy often relies on relationships predicted from data collected from extant species. Some years ago, it was suggested that femur length of birds could be predicted from egg mass but this relationship was counter-intuitive because egg mass is usually related to a measure of body size. The original analysis was also not phylogenetically controlled. This study used the same data to determine phylogenetically controlled relationships for body mass versus egg mass, and egg mass versus femur length. Further analysis showed that order was important in the prediction of egg mass from either body mass or femur length. For some orders, the single regression estimate through all data significantly over-, or under-estimated egg mass. This problem was more pronounced for femur length compared with body mass. Extrapolation of the relationship between femur length and egg mass for large extinct birds seemed to be provide useful data for the Gastornithidae but under-estimated egg mass for other large bird species of a variety of families. Use of equations derived from extant birds to gain insight into the reproductive biology of extinct species needs to be undertaken with great care.

Mots clés

  • bird order
  • body mass
  • egg mass
  • femur length
  • giant birds
  • phylogeny
Accès libre

Trends of avian locomotion in water – an overview of swimming styles

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 30 - 46

Résumé

Abstract

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.

Mots clés

  • locomotion
  • swimming
  • diving
  • aquatic birds
  • ecomorphology
  • evolution
Accès libre

Presentation of so far undetermined bird remains from the Pliocene of Beremend 26 and Csarnóta 2 and 4 (Baranya county, South Hungary)

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 47 - 68

Résumé

Abstract

The authors have defined at the order, subfamily, family or genus level the very fragmentary and small-size bird bone material from the three Pliocene-age sites in southern Hungary (Beremend 26, Csarnóta 2 and 4), which is in the collection of the Museum of the Hungarian Institute of Geology and Geophysics. The non-catalogued bone fragments remaining from the already examined material were identified. The number of taxa identified is 26, of which one species is new to science. The new species (Pliogallus csarnotanus n. sp.) belongs to a hitherto disputed genus, which is thus recognised through the newly defined material. Of the rest of the material, only Paleocryptonix hungaricus Jánossy, 1991 and Glaucidium baranensis Kessler, 2010 have been identified to species level, the Gallinula, Porzana, Merops, Garrulus, Nucifraga finds to genus level, while the other 18 taxa have been identified only to subfamily or family level (Perdicinae, Columbidae, Alaudidae, Hirundinidae, Panuridae, Paridae, Sittidae, Certhiidae, Muscicapidae, Turdidae, Sylviidae, Motacillidae, Prunellidae, Laniidae, Sturnidae and Fringillidae), or only to order level (Charadriiformes, Coraciiformes).

Mots clés

  • Beremend
  • Csarnóta
  • Pliocene
  • Hungary
  • birds
  • fossils
Accès libre

“Leucism resulting in xanthochroism” – A report on colour aberration in Coppersmith Barbet Psilopogon haemacephalus from Asia

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 69 - 79

Résumé

Abstract

Plumage colouration is important for birds as it helps them in camouflage, mate selection, social signalling and various other physiological and behavioural processes. The most common pigments responsible for colouration are melanins and carotenoids. In a few individuals, colouration is disrupted due to various causes. The most common colour aberrations found in birds are leucism, albinism, melanism, carotenism, schizochroism and dilution whereas xanthochroism is a lesser-known phenomenon. In this article, five records of colour aberrant Coppersmith Barbet Psilopogon haemocephalus are reported. The authors along with the help of citizen scientists observed four individuals with disruptions in plumage colouration from different areas of West Bengal and Assam, India and one from Rajsahi, Bangladesh. Due to the lack of melanins, the birds were mostly yellowish and whitish in colouration with or without some normally coloured feathers on the head and wings. The carotenoid deposition was unaffected in the case of the observed adults and juveniles. These records can be cited as xanthochroistic individuals resulting from leucism. This is the first record of such colour aberration for Coppersmith Barbet from the whole of its distribution range.

Mots clés

  • xanthochroism
  • carotenoids
  • melanin
  • Megalaimadae
  • India
  • Bangladesh
Accès libre

The current status of Chukar (Alectoris chukar J. E. Gray, 1830) in Armenia

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 80 - 96

Résumé

Abstract

The Chukar Alectoris chukar is one of the most popular game birds of Armenia, but there is no governmental monitoring programme for that exploited species. We carried out national surveys in 2003–2019 and estimate the current occupied range of the Chukar in Armenia as 5,082 km2 (17% of the country). In 2019, we estimate Chukar population size at 12,472 breeding pairs (95% CL: 10,266–14,677). Its population trend shows a moderate decline underlying strong annual fluctuations. In Armenia, the Chukar occurs on 20 public hunting lands covering 2,414 km2 in total. Its abundance on these public hunting lands is estimated to 5,558 breeding pairs in 2019 (95% CL: 3,656–7,460). Surveys of the seven Hunters’ Unions of Armenia found that there are 10,000 to 20,000 active hunters. The number of hunting permits issued annually increased ten-fold between 2016 and 2019, exceeding the capacity of the public hunting lands in 2019. A hunter survey found that each Chukar hunter shot on average (± SD) 5.88±3.05 birds in the 2018/19 season, which extrapolates to 17,052–34,104 shot specimens of Chukar (at least 46% of autumn numbers). Current hunting management practice is thus unsustainable and we provide recommendations for sustainable approaches that should replace it urgently.

Mots clés

  • game birds
  • distribution
  • population
  • hunting
  • management
Accès libre

Sacred green spaces in semi-urban areas sustain more birds than its adjacent areas: A study from lower Gangetic plains, West Bengal, India

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 97 - 112

Résumé

Abstract

With rapid urban expansion and flourishing real estate sector, remaining green patches in many sub-urban/peri-urban areas are facing immense threat and/or being destroyed. We therefore, explored the avian abundance and richness of green spaces around temples (sacred sites) and compared them with adjoining green spaces without religious places (control sites). The species richness and abundance in sacred sites (12.16 ± 0.65 species; 25.54 ± 1.176 individuals) was significantly higher than control sites (6.31 ± 0.77 species; 20.04 ± 1.4 individuals). The compositions of avian communities of sacred sites were significantly different and the presence of temple positively influenced the species richness. GLMM also revealed that the species richness was positively influenced by the distance to building and tree cover area and not influenced by distance to road, areas of water body, bare land. Our findings indicate that the green spaces around the sacred places have greater avian diversity in semi-urban areas, and could be prioritized for the conservation of avian diversity. Generating local support could be relatively easier due to traditional, religious and/or cultural belief against tree felling around the places of worship.

Mots clés

  • Avifauna
  • Species richness
  • Sacred
  • green spaces
  • urbanization
Accès libre

Distribution and demographic trend of Algerian Nuthatch (Sitta ledanti) population of Mount Babor forest in Babor-Tababort National Park

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 113 - 125

Résumé

Mots clés

  • Algerian Nuthatch
  • Babor-Tababort National Park
  • distribution
  • growth
  • habitat
Accès libre

Threat status assessment and conservation recommendations for Ibisbill in Kashmir Himalaya

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 126 - 134

Résumé

Abstract

The concern that population decline in wild species may lead to disruptions in the ecosystems has triggered numerous ecological studies across the globe. Therefore, monitoring biodiversity plays a key role in identifying priority species for evaluating the effectiveness of conservation measures. Ibisbill (Ibidorhyncha struthersii) is a habitat-specialist wader inhabiting high-altitude river rapids with cobbles, boulders and moderate flow of water in Asia. This study aimed to empirically assess the conservation and threat status of Ibisbill in the Kashmir Himalayan region (NW India). The species qualified as Endangered in the study region according to criterion B2 (area of occupancy < 500 km2) of the IUCN Red List categories and criteria. Moreover, six priority sites for the conservation of Ibisbill were identified during extended field surveys in River Sindh, Kashmir, NW India. Threats faced by the Ibisbill along the priority sites were also recorded. Out of six sites, mining, livestock grazing and vehicle movement was observed at three sites, human interference including tourism activity at five sites and predation was observed at four sites. The results of this study suggest several conservation recommendations which need to be implemented to ensure the long-term persistence of the species.

Mots clés

  • priority sites
  • disturbance
  • conservation
  • threat status
  • Himalaya
  • IUCN
Accès libre

Genetic polymorphism in the mitochondrial D-loop of Oriental White-backed Vultures (Gyps bengalensis)

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 135 - 145

Résumé

Abstract

Vultures are among nature’s most successful scavengers, providing tractable models for ecological, economic, and cultural studies. Asian vultures have undergone dramatic declines of 90–99% in the subcontinent due to consequences of poisoning drugs, thereby being at a high risk of extinction. In Pakistan, surveys conducted previously focused mostly the cause of decline and breeding strategies only. Genetic profiling of vultures was still unmapped that could play a particular role in conservation endeavors and let researchers to genetically label individuals of threatened or endangered species. In this study, we examined genetic diversity and molecular phylogeny of Oriental White-backed Vultures by analyzing mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequences. Genetic polymorphism was detected among individuals, and, on that basis, phylogenetic analysis was conducted through Bayesian analysis of DNA sequences using MCMC. Using multiple sequence alignment, two mutations, transversion T>G and transition G>A, were observed at nucleotide positions 1 and 2, respectively. Similarly, T/C heterozygosity at two positions, 53 and 110, and one heterozygous T/G locus at 130 position were also observed. The reference sequence, along with other samples of V1, V6, V7 and V9, was placed into a clade, while V2, V5, V11, V3, V4 and V10 samples were grouped into a two clade.

Mots clés

  • vulture
  • phylogenetics
  • mitochondrial D-loop
  • Pakistan
Accès libre

Observations on parental care of the Eurasian Spoonbill (Platalea leucorodia) during the post-fledging dispersal

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 146 - 157

Résumé

Abstract

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 (Platalea leucorodia) 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.

Mots clés

  • parental feeding
  • begging
  • parental leading
  • post-fledging dispersal and migration
  • Threskiornithidae
  • colour-ringing
Accès libre

A comparative study on the nesting materials used by House Sparrow (Passer domesticus) for Open and Inbox nests

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 158 - 169

Résumé

Abstract

House Sparrow (Passer domesticus) is a bird species connected to humans, widely distributed in most of the human settlements. They build nests in the crevices of our homes. The recent changes in house design minimized the crevices to build the nests and lead to habitat loss. The nest boxes are the alternative ways to re-establish the decreased House Sparrow population. We investigated the usage of nesting materials by House Sparrow with reference to construction of Open nests and Inbox nests in our study area. Because of its flexible attitude, it utilizes all the available materials for nest construction. In our study area at Jangareddigudem, we have examined about 100 Inbox nests and 40 Open nests. There are around 29 varieties of nesting materials used by Sparrows in the examined Inbox nests and around 27 varieties in the Open nests. Dūrvā grass found to be the major component of all the analyzed nesting materials in both Open and Inbox nests that constituted 43% and 36.5% respectively. The other structural materials such as coconut fibre (3.5%) and broom fibre (6%) were found to be more in Inbox nests. Synthetic fibre was more in Open nests (3.7%). We found significant differences between the Open and Inbox nests with respect to quantum of each nesting material type used, weight of the nests and time taken for nest construction by House Sparrow.

Mots clés

  • House Sparrow
  • nesting materials
  • nest boxes
  • Inbox nests
  • Open nests
Accès libre

Substrate influences foraging selection by Eurasian Green Woodpeckers Picus viridis in autumn and winter: observations in Hungary over a 20-year period

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 173 - 178

Résumé

Abstract

The foraging behaviour and habitat use of the Eurasian Green Woodpecker Picus viridis at various sites in Hungary over a 20-year period was documented. Detailed observations were recorded on foraging behaviour at hard substrates; in quarries, cliffs and human made structures of brick and stone construction. Using Chi-square tests on the frequency of observations of birds at hard substrates foraging sites, we compared usage during periods of snow cover and those without. Birds were found to be more frequently observed at hard substrates during periods of snow cover because these remained largely free of snow. We supposed that this response was due to invertebrate prey becoming increasingly scarce generally across typical foraging sites, i.e. grasslands and meadows during harsh winter conditions. Accessibility to the alternative sites became important as a source of food because availability of prey was more reliable. Vertical surfaces of hard substrates such as those associated with quarries, cliffs and buildings may be important to sustain Eurasian Green Woodpeckers in periods of snow cover where these provide a valuable foraging resource.

Mots clés

  • woodpecker
  • foraging
  • terrestrial-feeding
  • snow-cover
  • substrate
  • ants
Accès libre

Multi-species settlement by secondary hollow-nesting passerine birds in a European Bee-eater (Merops apiaster) colony

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 179 - 188

Résumé

Abstract

Simultaneous nesting of six species of secondary hollow-nesting passerine birds in abandoned European Bee-eater Merops apiaster nest-holes has been detected and described. The holes were occupied by Great Tit Parus major, Spotted Flycatcher Muscicapa striata, European Pied Flycatcher Ficedula hypoleuca, Black Redstart Phoenicurus ochruros, Eurasian Tree Sparrow Passer montanus and White Wagtail Motacilla alba, which formed a multi-species settlement in a European Bee-eater colony.

Mots clés

  • nest holes
Accès libre

Insect ectoparasites of the Red-backed Shrike Lanius collurio in the Iberian Peninsula

Publié en ligne: 30 Jun 2022
Pages: 189 - 193

Résumé

Abstract

Of the 26 Red-backed Shrike (Lanius collurio) sampled with the aim of characterizing insect ectoparasites, five birds were parasitized by louse flies. Two species were identified, Ornithophila metallica and Ornithomya fringillina. The first species is reported for the first time in the Red-backed Shrike, and the second represents a new host association in the Iberian Peninsula.

Mots clés

  • bird
  • louse flies
  • passerine
  • Spain

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