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Fidelity and persistence of Ring-billed (Larus delawarensis) and Herring (Larus argentatus) gulls to wintering sites

Waterbirds

By:
, , , , and ORCID iD
https://doi.org/10.1675/063.039.sp120

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Abstract

While the breeding ecology of gulls (Laridae) has been well studied, their movements and spatial organization during the non-breeding season is poorly understood. The seasonal movements, winter-site fidelity, and site persistence of Ring-billed (Larus delawarensis) and Herring (L. argentatus) gulls to wintering areas were studied from 2008–2012. Satellite transmitters were deployed on Ring-billed Gulls (n = 21) and Herring Gulls (n = 14). Ten Ring-billed and six Herring gulls were tracked over multiple winters and > 300 wing-tagged Ring-billed Gulls were followed to determine winter-site fidelity and persistence. Home range overlap for individuals between years ranged between 0–1.0 (95% minimum convex polygon) and 0.31–0.79 (kernel utilization distributions). Ringbilled and Herring gulls remained at local wintering sites during the non-breeding season from 20–167 days and 74–161 days, respectively. The probability of a tagged Ring-billed Gull returning to the same site in subsequent winters was high; conversely, there was a low probability of a Ring-billed Gull returning to a different site. Ring-billed and Herring gulls exhibited high winter-site fidelity, but exhibited variable site persistence during the winter season, leading to a high probability of encountering the same individuals in subsequent winters.

Additional publication details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Fidelity and persistence of Ring-billed (Larus delawarensis) and Herring (Larus argentatus) gulls to wintering sites
Series title:
Waterbirds
DOI:
10.1675/063.039.sp120
Volume:
39
Issue:
SP1
Year Published:
2016
Language:
English
Publisher:
The Waterbird Society
Contributing office(s):
Coop Res Unit Leetown
Description:
15 p.
First page:
220
Last page:
234