Changes in spring arrival date and timing of breeding of Ring-billed Gulls in southern Québec over four decades

Published on Jan 1, 2016in Avian Conservation and Ecology2.138
· DOI :10.5751/ACE-00821-110101
Jean-François Giroux16
Estimated H-index: 16
Martin Patenaude-Monette4
Estimated H-index: 4
+ 2 AuthorsFrançois Racine1
Estimated H-index: 1
Understanding how birds cope with climate change has received much attention in recent years. So far, more emphasis has been given to passerine species than to any other groups of birds, possibly because of the availability of long-term data sets. Our objective was to study the effect of climate change on spring arrival date and breeding chronology of Ring-billed Gulls (Larus delawarensis), a short-distance migrant with a diverse diet. Based on Etude des Populations d'Oiseaux du Quebec (EPOQ) checklists, we found that gulls arrived in southern Quebec five days earlier in 2012 than in 1971. Sporadic observations in three nearby colonies indicated that Ring-billed gulls laid eggs eight days earlier in 2012 than they did in 1978. Both arrival and laying dates closely fit temperature warming. Because of their diverse diet, Ring-billed Gulls always have access to some food resources during the breeding period making a mismatch between phenology and food abundance unlikely. Continuous warming may enhance the use of agricultural lands by gulls before and during the breeding period. However, this may not be sufficient to compensate for a reduction of refuse accessibility at landfills that have implemented deterrence programs. Modifications des dates d'arrivee printaniere et de reproduction des Goelands a bec cercle dans le sud du Quebec sur une periode de quatre decennies RESUME. La comprehension de l'ajustement des oiseaux aux changements climatiques a recu beaucoup d'attention durant les dernieres annees. Jusqu'a present, ce sont surtout les especes de passereaux qui ont fait l'objet de recherches, possiblement en raison de la disponibilite de longues series de donnees. Notre objectif etait d'etudier l'effet des changements climatiques sur la chronologie de migration printaniere et la reproduction des Goelands a bec cercle (Larus delawarensis), un migrateur de courte distance et a la diete variee. Au moyen des donnees d'Etude des Populations d'Oiseaux du Quebec (EPOQ), nous avons trouve que les goelands arrivaient dans le sud du Quebec cinq jours plus tot en 2012 qu'en 1971. A partir d'observations sporadiques dans trois colonies situees a proximite l'une de l'autre, nous avons observe qu'en 2012, les goelands pondaient huit jours plus tot qu'en 1978. Les dates d'arrivee et de ponte etaient fortement liees au rechauffement de la temperature. Grâce a leur diete variee, les Goelands a bec cercle ont toujours acces a des sources de nourriture durant leur reproduction; un desajustement entre la phenologie et l'abondance de nourriture est donc peu probable chez cette espece. Le rechauffement continu pourrait favoriser une plus grande accessibilite des terres agricoles pour les goelands avant et pendant leur reproduction. Cependant, cette possibilite pourrait ne pas etre suffisante pour compenser la reduction de l'acces aux dechets dans les sites d'enfouissement ou des programmes d'effarouchement sont en place.
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#1Jean-François Giroux (UQAM: Université du Québec à Montréal)H-Index: 16
#2Martin Patenaude-Monette (UQAM: Université du Québec à Montréal)H-Index: 4
Last. Pierre MolinaH-Index: 2
view all 6 authors...
Abstract. Ring-billed Gulls (Larus delawarensis) were rare at the beginning of the 20th century, possibly because of intensive exploitation. Once they became protected in 1916, their numbers increased throughout eastern North America, reaching a maximum of 875,000 breeding pairs around 1990. Since then, an overall decline of 19% has been recorded in the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence River while their numbers tripled in Atlantic Canada. The largest concentrations are still found on the Great L...
11 CitationsSource
#1Sarah C. Marteinson (UQAM: Université du Québec à Montréal)H-Index: 3
#2Jean-François Giroux (UQAM: Université du Québec à Montréal)H-Index: 16
Last. Jonathan Verreault (UQAM: Université du Québec à Montréal)H-Index: 21
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Environmental and behavioral factors have long been assumed to affect variation in avian field metabolic rate (FMR). However, due to the difficulties in measuring continuous behavior of birds over prolonged periods of time, complete time-activity budgets have rarely been examined in relation to FMR. Our objective was to determine the effect of activity (measured by detailed time-activity budgets) and a series of extrinsic and intrinsic factors on FMR of the omnivorous ring-billed gull (Larus del...
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#1Ericka ThiériotH-Index: 2
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Gulls are commonly attracted to landfills, and managers are often required to implement cost-effective and socially accepted deterrence programs. Our objective was to evaluate the effectiveness of an intensive program that integrated the use of trained birds of prey, pyrotechnics, and playback of gull distress calls at a landfill located close to a large ring-billed gull (Larus delawarensis) colony near Montreal, Quebec, Canada. We used long-term survey data on bird use of the landfill, conducte...
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#1Louise K. Blight (UBC: University of British Columbia)H-Index: 16
#2Mark C. Drever (UBC: University of British Columbia)H-Index: 18
Last. Peter Arcese (UBC: University of British Columbia)H-Index: 49
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ABSTRACT As conspicuous midtrophic omnivores, gulls can serve as useful indicators to characterize long-term ecological changes in marine ecosystems. Glaucous-winged Gulls (Larus glaucescens) have been studied in the Georgia Basin of British Columbia, Canada, an urbanized coastal zone, since the late 1800s. We collated all available information to develop a (noncontinuous) 111-year time series of counts at breeding colonies, and combined these counts with demographic vital rates to assess how ch...
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#1Martin Patenaude-Monette (UQAM: Université du Québec à Montréal)H-Index: 4
#2Marc Bélisle (Université de Sherbrooke)H-Index: 18
Last. Jean-François Giroux (UQAM: Université du Québec à Montréal)H-Index: 16
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Foraging animals are influenced by the distribution of food resources and predation risk that both vary in space and time. These constraints likely shape trade-offs involving time, energy, nutrition, and predator avoidance leading to a sequence of locations visited by individuals. According to the marginal-value theorem (MVT), a central-place forager must either increase load size or energy content when foraging farther from their central place. Although such a decision rule has the potential to...
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#1Caron-BeaudoinÉ. (UQAM: Université du Québec à Montréal)H-Index: 1
#3Patenaude-MonetteM. (UQAM: Université du Québec à Montréal)H-Index: 1
Last. VerreaultJ. (UQAM: Université du Québec à Montréal)H-Index: 2
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The aim of the present study was to investigate the feeding ecology of an omnivorous bird, the Ring-billed Gull (Larus delawarensis Ord, 1815), breeding in a highly urbanized and heterogeneous landscape (Montreal area, Quebec, Canada). We used gastrointestinal (G.I.) tract content analysis, GPS-based tracking information, and stable isotope profiles of carbon (δ13C) and nitrogen (δ15N) in selected tissues and major food items. Based on GPS tracking data (1–3 days), Ring-billed Gulls were categor...
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Conditions in arctic marine environments are changing rapidly, and understanding the link between environmental and demographic parameters could help to predict the conse- quences of future change for arctic seabirds. Over 20 yr (1988 to 2007), we studied colony atten- dance, adult survival and reproductive success of thick-billed murres, as well as the departure masses and diets of their chicks at Coats Island, Nunavut, Canada (62.95° N, 82.00° W). We eval- uated how each parameter responded to...
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#1Allen H. Hurlbert (UNC: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)H-Index: 27
#2Zhongfei Liang (UNC: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)H-Index: 1
A growing number of studies have documented shifts in avian migratory phenology in response to climate change, and yet there is a large amount of unexplained variation in the magnitude of those responses across species and geographic regions. We use a database of citizen science bird observations to explore spatiotemporal variation in mean arrival dates across an unprecedented geographic extent for 18 common species in North America over the past decade, relating arrival dates to mean minimum sp...
113 CitationsSource
#1Endre Knudsen (University of Oslo)H-Index: 6
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Last. Nils Chr. Stenseth (University of Oslo)H-Index: 90
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Recent shifts in phenology in response to climate change are well established but often poorly understood. Many animals integrate climate change across a spatially and temporally dispersed annual life cycle, and effects are modulated by ecological interactions, evolutionary change and endogenous control mechanisms. Here we assess and discuss key statements emerging from the rapidly developing study of changing spring phenology in migratory birds. These well-studied organisms have been instrument...
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#1Louise K. Blight (UBC: University of British Columbia)H-Index: 16
Seabirds integrate information about oceanic ecosystems across time and space, and are considered sensitive indicators of marine conditions. To assess whether hypothesized long-term foodweb changes such as forage fish declines may be reflected in a consumer's life history traits over time, I used meta-regression to evaluate multi-decadal changes in aspects of egg production in the glaucous-winged gull (Larus glaucescens), a common coastal bird. Study data were derived from literature searches of...
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#1Jeanne Clermont (UQAM: Université du Québec à Montréal)H-Index: 3
#2Denis Réale (UQAM: Université du Québec à Montréal)H-Index: 45
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Observed phenological changes can be explained either by individual phenotypic plasticity or by evolutionary changes, but there is more evidence pointing towards phenotypic plasticity to explain the mechanism behind changes in bird phenology. However, most studies on phenology have been conducted on insectivorous bird species for which breeding is closely tied to temperature and insect emergence. In this study, we examined the consequences of climatic conditions on the nesting phenology of tempe...
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