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Sci Adv. 2016 Jan 22;2(1):e1500931. doi: 10.1126/sciadv.1500931. eCollection 2016 Jan.

Costs of migratory decisions: A comparison across eight white stork populations.

Author information

1
Department of Migration and Immuno-Ecology, Max Planck Institute for Ornithology, 78315 Radolfzell, Germany.; Department of Biology, University of Konstanz, 78457 Konstanz, Germany.
2
Estación Biológica de Doñana, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, 41092 Seville, Spain.
3
Vogelschutzwarte Storchenhof Loburg e.V., 39279 Loburg, Germany.
4
Tyumen State University, 625003 Tyumen, Russia.
5
Acopian Center for the Environment, American University of Armenia, Yerevan 0019, Armenia.
6
Evros Delta Management Authority, Alexandroupoli 68100, Greece.
7
Faculty of Biological Sciences, University of Zielona Góra, Institute of Biotechnology and Environment Protection, 65-516 Zielona Góra, Poland.
8
Association Les Amis des Oiseaux-BirdLife Tunisia, Aryanah 2080, Tunisia.
9
Movement Ecology Laboratory, Department of Ecology, Evolution and Behavior, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem 91904, Israel.
10
School of Geography, Archaeology and Environmental Studies, University of the Witwatersrand, Wits 2050 Johannesburg, South Africa.

Abstract

Annual migratory movements can range from a few tens to thousands of kilometers, creating unique energetic requirements for each specific species and journey. Even within the same species, migration costs can vary largely because of flexible, opportunistic life history strategies. We uncover the large extent of variation in the lifetime migratory decisions of young white storks originating from eight populations. Not only did juvenile storks differ in their geographically distinct wintering locations, their diverse migration patterns also affected the amount of energy individuals invested for locomotion during the first months of their life. Overwintering in areas with higher human population reduced the stork's overall energy expenditure because of shorter daily foraging trips, closer wintering grounds, or a complete suppression of migration. Because migrants can change ecological processes in several distinct communities simultaneously, understanding their life history decisions helps not only to protect migratory species but also to conserve stable ecosystems.

KEYWORDS:

Animal movement; White storks; acceleration; energy expenditure; high-resolution GPS; lifetime tracking; migration costs; population comparison

PMID:
26844294
PMCID:
PMC4737271
DOI:
10.1126/sciadv.1500931
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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