Browsing by Subject "HABITAT SELECTION"

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  • Lehikoinen, Aleksi (2011)
    Predation affects life history traits of nearly all organisms and the population consequences of predator avoidance are often larger than predation itself. Climate change has been shown to cause phenological changes. These changes are not necessarily similar between species and may cause mismatches between prey and predator. Eurasian sparrowhawk Accipiter nisus, the main predator of passerines, has advanced its autumn phenology by about ten days in 30 years due to climate change. However, we do not know if sparrowhawk migrate earlier in response to earlier migration by its prey or if earlier sparrowhawk migration results in changes to predation risk on its prey. By using the median departure date of 41 passerine species I was able to show that early migrating passerines tend to advance, and late migrating species delay their departure, but none of the species have advanced their departure times as much as the sparrowhawk. This has lead to a situation of increased predation risk on early migrating long-distance migrants (LDM) and decreased the overlap of migration season with later departing short-distance migrants (SDM). Findings highlight the growing list of problems of declining LDM populations caused by climate change. On the other hand it seems that the autumn migration may become safer for SDM whose populations are growing. Results demonstrate that passerines show very conservative response in autumn phenology to climate change, and thus phenological mismatches caused by global warming are not necessarily increasing towards the higher trophic levels.
  • Tolvanen, Jere; Pakanen, Veli-Matti; Valkama, Jari; Tornberg, Risto (2017)
    Capsule: Mark-recapture data suggest low apparent survival and sex- and population-specific site fidelity and territory turnover in adult Northern Goshawks Accipiter gentilis breeding in northern Europe.Aims: To understand how species cope with global environmental change requires knowledge of variation in population demographic rates, especially from populations close to the species' northern range limit and from keystone species such as raptors. We analyse apparent survival and breeding dispersal propensity of adult Northern Goshawks breeding in northern Europe.Methods: We used long-term mark-recapture data from two populations in Finland, northern Europe, and Cormack-Jolly-Seber models and binomial generalized linear models to investigate sex- and population-specific variation in apparent survival, territory turnover and site fidelity.Results: We report low apparent survival (53-72%) of breeding adult Goshawks. Breeding dispersal propensity was higher in females than males, especially in northern Finland, contrasting with previous studies that suggest high site fidelity in both sexes.Conclusion: Low apparent survival in females may be mainly due to permanent emigration outside the study areas, whereas in males the survival rate may truly be low. Both demographic aspects may be driven by the combination of sex-specific roles related to breeding and difficult environmental conditions prevailing in northern latitudes during the non-breeding season.
  • Sirkiä, Saija; Lindén, Andreas; Helle, Pekka; Nikula, Ari; Knape, Jonas; Lindén, Harto (2010)
  • Kivinen, Sonja; Nummi, Petri; Kumpula, Timo (2020)
    Beavers (Castorsp.) are ecosystem engineers that cause significant changes to their physical environment and alter the availability of resources to other species. We studied flood dynamics created by American beaver (C. canadensisK.) in a southern boreal landscape in Finland in 1970-2018. We present for the first time, to our knowledge, a temporally continuous long-term study of beaver-induced flood disturbances starting from the appearance of beaver in the area. During the 49 years, the emergence of new sites flooded by beaver and repeated floods (61% of the sites) formed a dynamic mosaic characterized by clustered patterns of beaver sites. As beaver dispersal proceeded, connectivity of beaver sites increased significantly. The mean flood duration was approximately three years, which highlights the importance of datasets with high-temporal resolution in detecting beaver-induced disturbances. An individual site was often part of the active flood mosaic over several decades, although the duration and the number of repeated floods at different sites varied considerably. Variation of flood-inundated and post-flood phases at individual sites resulted in a cumulative number of unique patches that contribute to environmental heterogeneity in space and time. A disturbance mosaic consisting of patches differing by successional age and flood history is likely to support species richness and abundance of different taxa and facilitate whole species communities. Beavers are thus a suitable means to be used in restoration of riparian habitat due to their strong and dynamic influence on abiotic environment and its biotic consequences.
  • Byholm, Patrik; Burgas, Daniel; Virtanen, Tarmo; Valkama, Jari (2012)
  • Lehikoinen, Petteri; Lehikoinen, Aleksi; Mikkola-Roos, Markku; Jaatinen, Kim (2017)
    Human actions have led to loss and degradation of wetlands, impairing their suitability as habitat especially for waterbirds. Such negative effects may be mitigated through habitat management. To date scientific evidence regarding the impacts of these actions remains scarce. We studied guild specific abundances of breeding and staging birds in response to habitat management on 15 Finnish wetlands. In this study management actions comprised several means of vegetation removal to thwart overgrowth. Management cost efficiency was assessed by examining the association between site-specific costs and bird abundances. Several bird guilds exhibited positive connections with both habitat management as well as with invested funds. Most importantly, however, red-listed species and species with special conservation concern as outlined by the EU showed positive correlations with management actions, underlining the conservation value of wetland management. The results suggest that grazing was especially efficient in restoring overgrown wetlands. As a whole this study makes it clear that wetland habitat management constitutes a feasible conservation tool. The marked association between invested funds and bird abundance may prove to be a valuable tool for decision makers when balancing costs and impact of conservation measures against one another.
  • Fraixedas, Sara; Linden, Andreas; Husby, Magne; Lehikoinen, Aleksi (2020)
    The Common Crane (Grus grus) population has experienced an unprecedented increase across Europe during the last decades. Although cranes feed mostly on invertebrates, amphibians and berries during the breeding season, they can also eat eggs and young of other birds. Therefore, conservationists have raised concerns about the potential predatory effect of cranes on wetland avifauna, but the effects of crane predation on bird numbers have so far not been investigated. We here test the relationship between the crane and peatland bird population' abundances in Finland for five common wader and passerine species, and a set of seven less common waders, using line-transect data spanning from 1987 to 2014. We found that the population densities of two small passerines (Meadow Pipit Anthus pratensis and Western Yellow Wagtail Motacilla flava) and one wader species (Wood Sandpiper Tringa glareola) were positively associated with crane numbers, probably related to a protective effect against nest predators. For the two other common species and the set of less common waders, we did not find any significant relationships with crane abundance. None of the species was influenced by the (lagged) effect of crane presence (i.e. years since crane was first observed). Peatland drainage was responsible for most species' negative densities, indicating the need to protect and restore peatlands to mitigate the loss of peatland bird diversity in Finland. In addition, openness, wetness and area size were important peatland characteristics positively influencing most of the studied bird populations. The development in crane and other mire bird numbers in Europe should be monitored regularly to reveal any possible future predatory effects contributing to the shaping of the peatland bird community.
  • Gray, Claudia L.; Slade, Eleanor M.; Mann, Darren J.; Lewis, Owen T. (2014)
  • Aben, J.; Adriaensen, F.; Thijs, K. W.; Pellikka, P.; Siljander, M.; Lens, L.; Matthysen, E. (2012)
  • Mäkinen, Jussi; Vanhatalo, Jarno (2018)
    Kehitimme menetelmän erilaisten avointen aineistojen, kuten julkaistujen artikkelien ja tietokantojen, käyttämiseen analysoidaksemme arktisten merinisäkkäiden levinneisyyksiä. Menetelmän avulla arvioimme ympäristön vaikutusta lajien levinneisyydelle sekä levinneisyyksien mahdollisia muutoksia havaittujen ympäristömuutosten seurauksena. Tutkimus toteutettiin Karan Merellä, joka on yksi arktisista reunameristä. Etsimme avoimista aineistosta havaintotietoja jääkarhuista (Ursus maritimus), mursuista (Odobenus rosmarus rosmarus) ja norpista (Phoca hispida). Paikansimme havainnot ja analysoimme lajien esiintymistiheytta Poissonin pisteprosessimallilla. Vaihtelevan laatuinen aineisto ei sisältänyt tietoa lähdetutkimusten havaintoprosessista, minkä vuoksi pystyimme mallintamaan ainoastaan lajien esiintymistiheyden suhteessa tuntemattomaan havaintointensiteettiin. Selitimme lajien suhteellista esiintymistiheyttä ympäristömuuttujilla ja satunnaismuuttujilla, joista jälkimmäiset kuvastavat esiintymistiheyden satunnaisvaihtelua ajassa ja tilassa sekä suhteessa satunnaiseen havainnointi-intensiteettiin. Jääkarhujen esiintymistiheyttä selitimme myös norppien ennustetulla esiintymistiheydellä jääkarhujen havaintopisteissä. Merijään tiheys ja havaintojen etäisyys rannikosta olivat tärkeimpiä selittäviä ympäristömuuttujia jokaisen lajin kohdalla. Hylkeiden esiintymistiheys oli tärkein muuttuja selittämään jääkarhujen esiintymistiheyttä. Merijään tiheyden heikkeneminen 17-vuotisen tutkimusjakson aikana vaikutti lajien esiintymistiheyksiin siten, että mursujen ja jääkarhujen tiheys pysyi vakaana tai heikkeni hieman, kun taas norppien tiheys laski itäisellä ja kasvoi läntisellä Karan Merellä. Pisteprosessimalli on vakaa menetelmä lajien levinneisyyksien arvioimiseen perustuen vaihtelevan laatuisiin havaintoihin. Menetelmä tarjoaa sijainnista riippumattomasti luotettavaa tietoa ekosysteemeistä ja tarjoaa työkaluja suojelutoimintaan arktisella. Tuloksemme osoittivat, että yksinkertaisessa ravintoverkossa saalistajalajin levinneisyys selittyy paremmin saalislajien levinneisyydellä kuin ympäristömuuttujilla. Heikkenevä merijää on ilmeinen syy merinisäkkäiden levinneisyyksien muutoksiin arktisella alueella.
  • Turkia, Tytti; Jousimo, Jussi; Tiainen, Juha; Helle, Pekka; Rintala, Jukka; Hokkanen, Tatu; Valkama, Jari; Selonen, Vesa (2020)
    Spatial synchrony between populations emerges from endogenous and exogenous processes, such as intra- and interspecific interactions and abiotic factors. Understanding factors contributing to synchronous population dynamics help to better understand what determines abundance of a species. This study focuses on spatial and temporal dynamics in the Eurasian red squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris) using snow-track data from Finland from 29 years. We disentangled the effects of bottom-up and top-down forces as well as environmental factors on population dynamics with a spatiotemporally explicit Bayesian hierarchical approach. We found red squirrel abundance to be positively associated with both the abundance of Norway spruce (Picea abies) cones and the predators, the pine marten (Martes martes) and the northern goshawk (Accipiter gentilis), probably due to shared habitat preferences. The results suggest that red squirrel populations are synchronized over remarkably large distances, on a scale of hundreds of kilometres, and that this synchrony is mainly driven by similarly spatially autocorrelated spruce cone crop. Our research demonstrates how a bottom-up effect can drive spatial synchrony in consumer populations on a very large scale of hundreds of kilometres, and also how an explicit spatiotemporal approach can improve model performance for fluctuating populations.
  • Salgado, Ana; DiLeo, Michelle; Saastamoinen, Marjo (2020)
    1. Understanding species' habitat preferences are crucial to predict organisms' responses to the current climate crisis. In many insects, maternal habitat selection for oviposition essentially determines offspring performance. Whether future changes in climatic conditions may generate mismatches between oviposition preference and offspring performance, when mothers continue to prefer microhabitats that might threaten offspring survival, is an open question. 2. To address this gap, we tested if oviposition preferences of the Glanville fritillary butterfly Melitaea cinxia females put offspring at risk when plants are under drought stress conditions. Mainly, we focus on identifying the microhabitat determinants for oviposition and the variation of conditions experienced by the sessile offspring, using field observations from 12 populations collected over 2015–2018. These data are combined with 10 years of larval nest and precipitation data to understand within-population patterns of habitat selection. We tested whether the preferred microhabitats maximized the extended larval performance (i.e. overwinter survival). 3. We found that females preferentially oviposited in microhabitats with higher host plant abundance and higher proportion of host plants with signs of drought stress. In most years, larval nests had higher survival in these drought-stressed microhabitats. However, in an extremely dry year, only two nests survived over the summer. 4. Our results highlight that a failure to shift habitat preference under extreme climate conditions may have drastic consequences for the survival of natural populations under changing climatic conditions.
  • Gyllenberg, Mats; Kisdi, Eva; Weigang, Helene C. (2016)
    Empirical studies of dispersal indicate that decisions to immigrate are patch-type dependent; yet theoretical models usually ignore this fact. Here, we investigate the evolution of patch-type dependent immigration of a population inhabiting and dispersing in a heterogeneous landscape, which is structured by patches of low and high reward. We model the decision to immigrate in detail from a mechanistic underpinning. With the methods of adaptive dynamics, we derive both analytical and numerical results for the evolution of immigration when life-history traits are patch-type dependent. The model exhibits evolutionary branching in a wide parameter range and the subsequent coevolution can lead to a stable coexistence of a generalist, settling in patches of any type, and a specialist that only immigrates into patches of high reward. We find that individuals always settle in the patches of high reward, in which survival until maturation, relative fecundity and emigration probability are high. We investigate how the probability to immigrate into patches of low reward changes with model parameters. For example, we show that immigration into patches of low reward increases when the emigration probability in these patches increases. Further, immigration into patches of low reward decreases when the patches of high reward become less safe during the dispersal season. (C) 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.