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The timing of spring migration in trans-Saharan migrants: a comparison between Ottenby, Sweden and Capri, Italy

  • Niclas Jonzén
  • Dario Piacentini
  • Arne Andersson
  • Alessandro Montemaggiori
  • Martin Stervander
  • Diego Rubolini
  • Jonas Waldenström
  • Fernando Spina
Publishing year: 2006
Language: English
Pages: 27-33
Publication/Series: Ornis Svecica
Volume: 16
Issue: 1-2
Document type: Journal article
Publisher: Sveriges Ornitologiska Förening

Abstract english

Some migratory birds have advanced their spring arrival to Northern Europe, possibly by increasing the speed of migration through Europe in response to increased temperature en route. In this paper we compare the phenology of spring arrival of seven trans-Saharan migrants along their migration route and test for patterns indicating that migration speed varied over the season using long-term data collected on the Italian island of Capri and at Ottenby Bird Observatory, Sweden. There was a linear relationship between median arrival dates on Capri and at Ottenby. The slope was not significantly different from one. On average, the seven species arrived 15 days later at Ottenby compared to Capri. There was a (non-significant) negative relationship between the species-specific arrival dates at Capri and the differences in median arrival dates between Capri and Ottenby, possibly indicating a tendency towards faster migration through Europe later in the season. To what extent different species are able to speed up their migration to benefit from the advancement of spring events is unknown.


  • Biological Sciences


  • ISSN: 1102-6812
Arne Andersson
E-mail: arne [dot] andersson [at] biol [dot] lu [dot] se

Research engineer

Evolutionary ecology

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