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Title: Breeding-habitat and nest-site characteristics of Scarlet Robins and Eastern Yellow Robins near Armidale, New South Wales
Contributor(s): Debus, SJS  (author)
Publication Date: 2006
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Abstract: I studied the selection of breeding habitat and nest microhabitat in Scarlet Robins 'Petroica multicolor' and Eastern Yellow Robins 'Eopsaltria australis', in remnant woodland on the New England Tablelands of New South Wales in 2000-2002. Yellow Robins used breeding territories (n = 10) with significantly higher densities of rough-barked saplings, acacias and other (non-Acacia) shrubs than Scarlet Robin breeding territories (n = 10) and plots lacking Yellow Robins (n = 7). Yellow Robins nested mostly in gully and lower-slope positions, with a southerly aspect, >40 m from the woodland edge, whereas Scarlet Robins nested mostly on upper slopes and ridges, with no preferred minimum distance from the woodland edge. Most Yellow Robin nests (86% of 58) had overhead foliage within 1 m, shielding them from above, whereas over half (58% of 54) of Scarlet Robin nests were in unconcealed positions. Yellow Robin nests had significantly greater density of cover, and the surrounding habitat was more complex, than for Scarlet Robin nests, in 0.13-ha plots centred on the nest. Breeding success and fledgling survival in the Yellow Robin were positively related to the density of acacias, non-Acacia shrubs and rough-barked saplings (but not gum saplings) in breeding territories. Fledging success and juvenile survival in the Yellow Robin were also positively related to habitat complexity around nest-sites (but not distance to nearest cover, or items of cover within 20 m). Scarlet Robins had exposed nests and suffered high nest predation, with too few successful nests for comparison with unsuccessful nests. Habitat conservation for the Yellow Robin should address the complexity of the ground, shrub and sapling layer in woodland remnants; that for the Scarlet Robin may need to address foraging substrate and ecologically based control of nest predators.
Publication Type: Journal Article
Source of Publication: Pacific Conservation Biology, 12(4), p. 261-271
Publisher: Surrey Beatty & Sons Pty Ltd
Place of Publication: 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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