Journal of Ornithology

, Volume 152, Supplement 1, pp 161–168 | Cite as

The importance of stopover habitat for developing effective conservation strategies for migratory animals

Original Paper

Abstract

Although stopover habitats are used by many species as refuelling stations during migration and can be critical for survival and successful reproduction, they are rarely incorporated in year-round population models and conservation strategies. We incorporate stopover habitat into a density-dependent population model and then use this model to examine how optimizing one-time land purchase strategies for a migratory population is influenced by variation in the quality and the strength of density-dependence in a stopover habitat used for both fall and spring migration. As the strength of the density-dependence in the stopover habitat increases, the optimal amount of stopover habitat purchased increases while the amount of habitat during the stationary periods of the annual cycle (breeding and wintering) decreases. Any change in the cost of purchasing stopover habitat affects investment strategies in all three periods of the annual cycle. When the quality of the stopover habitat is high, the optimal strategy is to invest in low-quality habitat during breeding and wintering and when the stopover habitat quality is low, the optimal strategy switches to investing in high-quality habitat during the stationary periods. We apply this model to a threatened warbler population and demonstrate how purchase decisions to conserve stopover habitat that are not coordinated with conservation actions on the breeding and wintering grounds can potentially result in a lower population carrying-capacity compared to considering habitat in all three periods of the annual cycle simultaneously. Our model provides potential guidelines for developing conservation strategies for animals that rely on refueling habitats between the stationary breeding and non-breeding periods of the migratory cycle.

Keywords

Conservation models Population dynamics Migratory birds Stopover sites 

Supplementary material

10336_2011_682_MOESM1_ESM.docx (88.5 mb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 90609 kb)

References

  1. Atienza JC, Pinilla J, Justribo JH (2001) Migration and conservation of the aquatic warbler Acrocephalus paludicola in Spain. Ardeola 48:197–208Google Scholar
  2. Bairlein F (1985) Body weights and fat deposition of Palaearctic passerine migrants in the central Sahara. Oecologia 66:141–146CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Basili GD, Temple SA (1999) Dickcissels and crop damage in Venezuela: defining the problem with ecological models. Ecology 9:732–739Google Scholar
  4. Bearhop S, Hilton GM, Votier SC, Waldron S (2004) Stable isotope ratios indicate that body condition in migrating passerines is influenced by winter habitat. Proc R Soc Lond B Biol Sci 271:S215–S218CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bêty J, Gauthier G, Giroux J-F (2003) Body condition, migration and timing of reproduction in Snow Geese, a test of the condition-dependent model of optimal clutch size. Am Nat 162:110–121PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (2000) COSEWIC assessment and update status report on the Hooded warbler Wilsonia citrina in Canada. Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada, OttawaGoogle Scholar
  7. Dankel DJ, Skagen DW, Ulltang O (2008) Fisheries management in practice: review of 13 commercially important fish stocks. Rev Fish Biol Fish 18:201–233CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Delingat J, Dierschke V, Schmaljohann H, Mendel B, Bairlein F (2006) Daily stopovers as optimal migration strategy in a long-distance migrating passerine: the northern wheatear Oenanthe oenanthe. Ardea 94:593–605Google Scholar
  9. Drent R, Both C, Green M, Madsen J, Piersma T (2003) Pay-offs and penalties of competing migratory schedules. Oikos 103:274–292CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Fretwell SD (1972) Populations in a seasonal environment. Princeton University Press, PrincetonGoogle Scholar
  11. Haramis GM, Nichols JB, Pollock KH, Hines JE (1986) The relationship between body mass and survival of wintering canvasbacks. Auk 103:506–514Google Scholar
  12. Heredia B, Rose L, Painter M (1996) Globally threatened birds in Europe, action plans. Council of Europe Publishing, StrasbourgGoogle Scholar
  13. Kelly JF, DeLay LS, Finch DM (2002) Density-dependent mass gain by wilson’s warblers during stopover. Auk 119:210–213CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Klaassen M, Bauer S, Madsen J, Possingham HP (2008) Optimal management of a goose flyway: migrant management at minimum cost. J Appl Ecol 45:1446–1452CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Langin KM, Marra PP, Németh Z, Moore FR, Kyser TK, Ratcliffe LM (2009) Breeding latitude and timing of spring migration in songbirds crossing the Gulf of Mexico. J Avian Biol 40:309–316CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Lehnen SE, Krementz DG (2005) Turnover rates of fall-migrating pectoral sandpipers in the lower mississippi alluvial valley. J Wildl Manage 69:671–680CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Levy DA, Cadenhead AD (1995) Selective tidal stream transport of adult sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) in the Fraser River estuary. Can J Fish Aquat Sci 52:1–12CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Mackenzie SA, Friis CA (2006) Long Point bird observatory 2005 field operations report. Long Point bird observatory, Long Point (Port Rowan)Google Scholar
  19. Migratory Bird Conservation Commission (2008) In: 2007 Annual Report—Migratory Bird Conservation Commission. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Arlington, pp 1–50Google Scholar
  20. Migratory Bird Conservation Commission (2009) In: 2008 Annual Report—Migratory Bird Conservation Commission. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Arlington, pp 1–53Google Scholar
  21. Norris DR (2005) Carry-over effects and habitat quality in migratory populations. Oikos 109:178–186CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Norris DR, Taylor CM (2006) Predicting the consequences of carry-over effects in migratory populations. Biol Lett 2:148–151PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Norris DR, Marra PP, Kyser TK, Sherry TW, Ratcliffe LM (2004) Tropical winter habitat limits reproductive success on the temperate breeding grounds in a migratory bird. Proc R Soc B Biol Sci 271:59–64CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Ogden LJ, Stutchbury BJ (1994) Hooded Warbler (Wilsonia citrina). In: Poole A, Gill F (eds) The birds of North America. Academy of Natural Sciences/American Ornithologists’ Union, Philadelphia/Washington D.C.Google Scholar
  25. Pfister C, Kasprzyk MJ, Harrington BA (1998) Body fat levels and annual return in migrating semipalmated sandpipers. Auk 115:904–915Google Scholar
  26. Robbins CS, Fitzpatrick JW, Hamel PB (1992) A warbler in trouble: Dendroica cerulea. In: Hagan JM, Johnston DW (eds) Ecology and conservation of neotropical migrant landbirds. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington D.C., pp 549–562Google Scholar
  27. Russell RW, Carpenter FL, Hixon MA, Paton DC (1992) The impact of variation in stopover habitat quality on migrant rufuous hummingbirds. Conserv Biol 8:483–490CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Sandberg R, Moore FR (1996) Fat stores and arrival on the breeding grounds: reproductive consequences for passerine migrants. Oikos 77:577–581CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Schaffer N, Walther BA, Gutteridge K, Rahbek C (2006) The African migration and wintering grounds of the aquatic warbler Acrocephalus paludicola. Bird Conserv Int 16:33–56CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Schaub M, Jenni L (2001) Variation of fuelling rates among sites, days and individuals in migrating passerine birds. Funct Ecol 15:584–594CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Schaub M, Jenni L, Bairlein F (2008) Fuel stores, fuel accumulation, and the decision to depart from a migration stopover site. Behav Ecol 19:657–666CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Sheehy J, Taylor C, Norris DR (2010) Optimal conservation planning for migratory animals: integrating demographic information across seasons. Conserv Lett 3:192–202CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Shimazaki H, Tamura M, Higuchi H (2004) Migration routes and important stopover sites of endangered oriental white storks (Ciconia boyciana) as revealed by satellite tracking. Mem Natl Inst Polar Res 58:162–178Google Scholar
  34. Smith RJ, Moore FR (2003) Arrival fat and reproductive performance in a long-distance passerine migrant. Oecologia 134:325–331PubMedGoogle Scholar
  35. Spear LB, Ainley DG (1999) Migration routes of sooty shearwaters in the pacific ocean. Condor 101:205–218CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Sutherland WJ (1996) Predicting the consequences of habitat loss for migratory populations. Proc R Soc B Biol Sci 263:1325–1327CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Dt. Ornithologen-Gesellschaft e.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Justin Sheehy
    • 1
  • Caz M. Taylor
    • 2
  • D. Ryan Norris
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Integrative BiologyUniversity of GuelphGuelphCanada
  2. 2.Department of Ecology and Evolutionary BiologyTulane UniversityNew OrleansUSA

Personalised recommendations