Browsing by Subject "DUCKS"

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  • Poysa, Hannu; Lammi, Esa; Poysa, Silvo; Vaananen, Veli-Matti (2019)
    Interactions and dependence between species can transmit the effects of species declines within and between trophic levels, resulting in secondary endangerments and, in some cases, extinctions. Many mixed-species avian breeding aggregations commonly have a protector species whose aggressive nest defense is used by other species to defend their nests. Disappearance of the protector species may have population demographic consequences on the dependent species. Aggressive nest defense behavior of small colonial gulls, such as the black-headed gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus), is used by many waterbird species to gain protection against predators. We used data from 15 local waterbird communities in Finland to study long-term changes and dynamics of breeding numbers of other waterbirds as a response to long-term changes and dynamics of black-headed gull colonies. We found that breeding numbers of many species tracked long-term changes in the size of black-headed gull colonies. This was true even after controlling for a common trend in the size of the black-headed gull colony and the breeding numbers of the other species. The trend-controlled positive temporal association with black-headed gull was relatively stronger in species that nest in similar habitats of a lake as the black-headed gull, and in species that have a more critical conservation status due to drastic population decline. Our results suggest that the overall decline of black-headed gull colonies has resulted in secondary endangerment of many other species in waterbird communities.
  • Arzel, Celine; Nummi, Petri; Arvola, Lauri; Pöysä, Hannu; Davranche, Aurélie; Rask, Martti; Olin, Mikko; Holopainen, Sari; Viitala, Risto; Einola, Eeva; Manninen-Johansen, Sanni (2020)
    Surface water browning affects boreal lakes in the Northern Hemisphere. This process is expected to increase with global warming. Boreal lakes are the most numerous lakes on Earth. These ecosystems are particularly sensitive to disturbances due to their low biodiversity compared to other aquatic environments. The recent darkening of surface water is expected to hinder key ecosystem processes, particularly through lower primary productivity and loss of biodiversity. However, studies based on long-term data collections have rarely been conducted on the ecological consequences of water browning on aquatic food webs, especially concerning its impacts on invertebrate communities. For the first time, our analysis based on two decades of data collection in Finnish lakes highlighted a relation between water browning and a decline in aquatic macroinvertebrate abundances. Aquatic invertebrates are the main food resource for many secondary predators such as fish and waterbirds, hence such effect on their populations may have major consequences for boreal ecosystem functioning.
  • Nummi, Petri; Arzel, Celine; Sauramo, Virva (2021)
    Stability of breeding habitat use and population variability was studied in two common wader species: green sandpiper Tringa ochropus and common sandpiper Actitis hypoleucos in a boreal lake area in southern Finland. The main natural driver of habitat disturbance in the area is an ecosystem engineer, the North American beaver Castor canadensis. We also studied the presence and abundance of green sandpipers before, during and after beaver-induced floods. In the studied landscape, the variable habitat created by beaver flooding appeared to have carrying capacity for a larger green sandpiper population than the more stable habitat for that of the common sandpiper. Common sandpipers made much use of the same lakes from year to year whereas the occupation of wetlands by the green sandpiper was more variable. The population of common sandpipers fluctuated more, although they inhabited the more stable environment. Green sandpiper pair numbers increased during beaver flooding, which suggests that they adapt rapidly to changes in breeding site availability. Some of the facilitating effects of the beaver appeared to remain 1-2 years after the flooding.
  • Nummi, Petri; Suontakanen, Eeva-Maria; Holopainen, Sari; Väänänen, Veli-Matti (2019)
    Avian species respond to ecological variability at a range of spatial scales and according to life history stage. Beaver dams create wetland systems for waterbirds that are utilized throughout different stages of the breeding season. We studied how beaver?induced variability affected mobile pairs and more sedentary broods along with the production of Common Teal Anas crecca at the patch and landscape scale on their breeding grounds. Beavers Castor spp. are ecosystem engineers that enhance waterfowl habitats by impeding water flow and creating temporary flooding. Two landscapes in southern Finland with (Evo) and without (Nuuksio) American Beavers Castor canadensis were used in this study. To investigate the patch?scale effect, pair and brood densities along with brood production were first compared at beaver?occupied lakes and non?beaver lakes in the beaver landscape. Annual pair and brood densities/km shoreline and brood production were compared between beaver and non?beaver landscapes. Facilitative effects of beaver activity were manifest on brood density at both patch and landscape scales: these were over 90 and 60 percent higher in beaver patches and landscapes, respectively. An effect of beaver presence on pair density was only seen at the landscape level. Pair density did not strongly affect brood production, as shown earlier for relatively mildly density?dependent Teal populations. Because the extent of beaver flooding was a crucial factor affecting annual Teal production in the study area, we infer beaver activity has consequences for the local Teal population. Ecosystem engineering by the beaver could therefore be considered as a restoration tool in areas where waterfowl are in need of high?quality habitats. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.