Out of Africa: Juvenile Dispersal of Black-Shouldered Kites in the Emerging European Population
Balbontín Arenas, Javier
Pérez Gil, Sergio
Abad Gómez-Pantoja, José María
Negro, Juan José
|Universidad de Sevilla. Departamento de Zoología
|Knowledge of animal dispersal patterns is of great importance for the conservation and maintenance of natural populations. We here analyze juvenile dispersal of the poorly studied Black-shouldered Kite (Elanus caeruleus) ...
Knowledge of animal dispersal patterns is of great importance for the conservation and maintenance of natural populations. We here analyze juvenile dispersal of the poorly studied Black-shouldered Kite (Elanus caeruleus) monitored in southwestern Spain in an ongoing long-term study initiated in 2003. The European population of Black-shouldered kites is thought to be a recent one funded by colonizing African birds, as no kites have been found in the European fossil record, and the breeding population has progressively expanded to the North in the late 20th and 21st centuries. We obtained information on movements behavior during dispersal from 47 juveniles Kites after marking 384 nestlings with wing tags and three nestlings with radio transmitter. We have tested two competing hypotheses (i.e., the Resources Competition Hypothesis and the Wandering Hypothesis (WH)) that may explain the leptokurtic distribution of the natal dispersal distance in Elanus. After independence, juvenile females dispersed farther from the natal areas than males, as is common in birds. On average, males and females dispersed from their natal areas over 9 (i.e., 26.15 km) and 15 (i.e., 43.79 km) breeding territories, respectively. A male and two females dispersed further than 100 km from their natal nest. Our results indicated some evidence supporting the competition-for-resources hypotheses since nestlings hatched from high quality territories stayed closer from natal areas than nestlings hatched from low quality territories and also nestlings hatched first within the brood also tend to recruit closer to their natal area than later hatched nestlings which tend to disperse further away from their natal area. The information provided by these crucial demographic parameters will be used for the elaboration of future conservation plans for the management of this colonizing species in Europe.
|Rivera, D., Balbontín Arenas, J., Pérez Gil, S., Abad Gómez-Pantoja, J.M. y Negro, J.J. (2022). Out of Africa: Juvenile Dispersal of Black-Shouldered Kites in the Emerging European Population. Animals, 12 (16), 2070.