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If waterbirds are nocturnal are we conserving the right habitats?

Austin, V. I., Ribot, Raoul and Bennett, Andrew 2016, If waterbirds are nocturnal are we conserving the right habitats?, Emu : Austral ornithology, vol. 116, no. 4, pp. 423-427, doi: 10.1071/MU15106.

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Title If waterbirds are nocturnal are we conserving the right habitats?
Author(s) Austin, V. I.
Ribot, Raoul
Bennett, AndrewORCID iD for Bennett, Andrew orcid.org/0000-0001-8512-2805
Journal name Emu : Austral ornithology
Volume number 116
Issue number 4
Start page 423
End page 427
Total pages 5
Publisher CSIRO Publishing
Place of publication Melbourne, Vic.
Publication date 2016
ISSN 0158-4197
1448-5540
Keyword(s) abundance
behavioural ecology
ducks
thermal imaging
wetland use
Summary Waterbirds are key indicators of wetland health and recent declines in their abundance have renewed focus on conservation of their habitats in Australia. Yet conservation efforts have mostly ignored the identification of habitats used at night. In this study we assessed three common species, Grey Teal (Anas gracilis), Chestnut Teal (Anas castanea) and Australian Wood Duck (Chenonetta chubata), during day and night. Thermal imaging technologies were utilised to identify individuals to species, count abundances and observe habitat requirements. We found major differences in abundance between night and day of all three species at our study sites. Further, habitat use of teals differed between nocturnal and diurnal hours, with birds aggregating on the bank during daylight hours and moving onto the water during the night. Our findings suggest that nocturnal waterbird surveys can assist conservation efforts. By monitoring bird numbers by night, the significance of a habitat for feeding and shelter purposes can be determined. Additionally, by studying nocturnal behaviour and habitat use, identification and conservation of important wetlands will be increased.
Language eng
DOI 10.1071/MU15106
Field of Research 060201 Behavioural Ecology
0502 Environmental Science And Management
0602 Ecology
0608 Zoology
Socio Economic Objective 970105 Expanding Knowledge in the Environmental Sciences
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2016, BirdLife Australia
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30090169

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