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Breeding Sabbaticals in Black-tailed Godwits

Gaag, D.O. van der (2014) Breeding Sabbaticals in Black-tailed Godwits. Master's Thesis / Essay, Biology.

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As reproduction is a major component in population dynamics it is important to understand why birds do not breed. For this reason the main question in this research is: Is having a breeding sabbatical common in black-tailed godwits Limosa limosa limosa, and if so, why do they occasionally skip their reproduction? To answer the main question we will first have to answer two sub questions. First we need to know how many godwits take reproductive sabbaticals. Second if these non-breeders have distinctive characteristics. To answer these questions data was gathered in meadows in south-west Friesland, which was part of the 11 year running godwit population dynamics research. Reasons for breeding sabbaticals found in literature are related to age, loss of a partner, arrival date, inexperience and food availability. 10% of the godwit population in the northern Workumerwaard did not breed in 2014. The only reason for skipping reproduction we found was the difference in experience. Inexperienced birds, that had not yet bred in the years before, had a higher chance of being a non-breeder than experienced ones. This means inexperienced non-breeders have a higher chance to stay inexperienced in following years as well. What the actual reasons are for non-breeding are discussed but it is still difficult to answer this question.

Item Type: Thesis (Master's Thesis / Essay)
Degree programme: Biology
Thesis type: Master's Thesis / Essay
Language: English
Date Deposited: 15 Feb 2018 08:01
Last Modified: 15 Feb 2018 08:01

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