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Henning Heldbjerg

In search of millions of lost Starlings across Europe: The relation between monitoring, science and conservation in a declining species

Publikation: KonferencebidragKonferenceabstrakt til konferenceForskningpeer review

The Starling (Sturnus vulgaris) is a widespread and common species, which is declining in large parts of its European range. We analysed and compared breeding population trends across Europe to investigate the causes of the declines. At the continental scale, the European population declined at a mean annual rate of -2.01 ± 0.26 % during 1980-2012. We fitted log-linear Poisson regression models to European Bird Census Council data from 27 national breeding bird monitoring schemes across Europe to compare and contrast annual indices of changes in abundance using trim software. The results from national monitoring programmes showed a general cline across Europe, with most severe declines in north and west Europe in contrast to stable or increasing trends in central and eastern Europe. We investigated the drivers behind the regional variations in Starling abundance within Denmark to investigate the causes of these differences. Using regional agricultural statistics, we demonstrated
a strong positive relationship between local Starling density and the intensity of grazing cattle, which explained the variation in trends in relation to contrasting
patterns of agricultural across the country. The Danish experience may help explain the contrasting trends between different European countries. Finally, we used light-weight gps-loggers to investigate the foraging habitat preferences in the part of Denmark where the Starling population has the highest density and is declining least, to try to understand factors contributing to the decline of the Starling and hence provide potential policy recommendations to stem the decline.
Antal sider1
StatusUdgivet - 2016
BegivenhedBirdNumbers 2016: Birds in a changing world - Halle, Tyskland
Varighed: 5 sep. 20169 sep. 2016
Konferencens nummer: 20


KonferenceBirdNumbers 2016

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