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Title: The role of intense net predation in the decline of Scarlet Robins and Eastern Yellow Robins in remnant woodland near Armidale, New South Wales
Contributor(s): Debus, SJS (author)
Publication Date: 2006
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Abstract: A study of open-nesting Eastern Yellow Robins 'Eopsaltria australis' and Scarlet Robins 'Petroica multicolor', on the New England Tablelands of New South Wales in 2000-02, found low breeding success typical of eucalypt woodland birds. The role of intense nest predation in the loss of birds from woodland fragments was investigated by means of predator-exclusion cages at robin nests, culling of Pied Currawongs 'Strepera graculina', and monitoring of fledging and recruitment in the robins. Nest-cages significantly improved nest success (86% vs 20%) and fledging rate (1.6 vs 0.3 fledglings per attempt) for both robin species combined (n = 7 caged, 20 uncaged). For both robin species combined, culling of currawongs produced a twofold difference in nest success (33% vs 14%), a higher fledging rate (0.5 vs 0.3 per attempt), and a five-day difference in mean nest survival (18 vs 13 days) (n = 62 nests), although sample sizes for nests in the cull treatment (n = 18) were small and nest predation continued. Although the robin breeding population had not increased one year after the cull, the pool of Yellow Robin recruits in 2001-03, after enhanced fledging success, produced two emigrants to a patch where Yellow Robins had become extinct. Management to assist the conservation of open-nesting woodland birds should address control of currawongs.
Publication Type: Journal Article
Source of Publication: Pacific Conservation Biology, 12(4), p. 279-287
Publisher: Surrey Beatty & Sons Pty Ltd
Place of Publication: Sydney, Australia
ISSN: 1038-2097
Field of Research (FOR): 060207 Population Ecology
Peer Reviewed: Yes
HERDC Category Description: C1 Refereed Article in a Scholarly Journal
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