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Exploration and exploitation of foraging patches by desert sparrows

Food resources are generally patchily distributed which has triggered a plethora of foraging models predicting both exploration behaviours to find high-quality patches and exploitation levels when foraging in a patch...

From Norway to Mali - Tracking Temminck’s stints

For a long time, I’ve been fascinated by the variation in breeding systems, morphology, habitats and other general lifestyles of waders. When I first learnt about light-level geolocation as a technique for tracking the non-breeding movements...

Editor´s choice - Systematics and evolution of the Pan-Alcidae

A phylogenetic analysis of auks, puffins and their allies including both extant (23) and extinct (28) alcid species gives new and fascinating pespectives about the possible origins and diversification as well as about the reconstruction of ancestral diet...

Editor´s choice - Ratios, adaptations, and metabolic capability of avian flight muscles

The adaptive variation in avian body composition has for a long time been interesting from an energy turn-over point of view. Besides being inferred as the basis of variation in basal metabolic rate, such variation is also important for generating work as for example...

Seasonal survival is the key to effective protection

With a little bit of ‘basic math’, Russian biologist Eldar Rakhimberdiev shows how changes in seasonal survival may be used as a tool to detect problems in bird populations. ‘A dip in survival during a certain period or in a certain place, means the population...

Editor´s choice - Sexual pigmentation and parental risk-taking in yellow warblers

Increased perceived predation risk during breeding is predicted to reduce parental effort as such behaviours often are conspicuous and are traded off against vigilance...

Editor´s choice - Automated tracking of wild hummingbird body mass

A male ruby-throated hummingbird approaches an artificial feeder outfitted with a passive-integrated transponder reader and a precision electronic balance. As this bird perches to feed its ID is detected and its mass is automatically recorded.

Using drones to monitor bird nests

In late winter 2013/14 the crow fieldwork crew of the Wolf Lab at the Evolutionary Biology Centre in Uppsala, Sweden, started planning the next field season. The goal was to sample two dozen hooded and carrion crow nestlings from sites in Sweden and Germany...

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Journal of Avian Biology wish all its readers, authors, reviewers and editors a relaxing and enjoyable holiday season. We hope that you all get some well-deserved rest together with family and friends.

Editor´s Choice: Avian body size change in response to environmental change

That avian populations respond to climate change by changes in phenology and distribution is well known but should we predict any consistent trends in body size?

Editor´s Choice - Movements and breeding dispersal of Snowy owls

Tracking snowy owls has been (and still is) a great challenge. The fact that those birds are highly mobile, that they show almost no breeding site fidelity and disperse over huge distances from one year to another yet increases the challenge.

Male testes come in all shapes and sizes

Male testes come in all shapes and sizes. Male mammals usually have two testes that are equal in size but birds, for some unknown reason, usually have one testis bigger than the other, and it is often said that the left testis is larger than the right.

A canary for climate change?

Modern-day puffins and auks have long been recognized as environmental indicator species for ongoing faunal shifts, and fossil records now indicate that ancient relatives were similarly informative.

Long-term phenological shifts and intra-specific differences in migratory change in the willow warbler

Every year, billions of birds move across the Earth to reach their wintering and breeding grounds. One of these mass movement members is the willow warbler, a long-distance migrant that winters in sub-Saharan Africa and breeds in northern Europe and Asia.

Changes in wintering bird populations in Finland

The numbers of wintering urban birds have increased three times and the number of water birds have increased ten times in Finland since the end of 1950s...

Prey size affects global distribution of the golden eagle

In this study we show that the availability of optimal-sized prey (between 0.5-5 kg) is a crucial driver of foraging behaviour, breeding success and distribution patterns of the Golden Eagle Aquila chrysaetos L. on a continental scale.

Spring phenology and timing of breeding in short-distance migrant birds

In this impressive long-term study the authors explore if common goldeneyes can track environmental cues and adjust their breeding in response to a changing climate. At their study site in Finland the ice-out date has advanced with 2 weeks during their 24 yr study...

Automated tracking of wild hummingbird mass

In this study the authors examine the use of automated collection of hummingbird mass data using low-cost, low-power radio frequency identification (RFID) technology. In a field study in southern Ontario, wild hummingbirds were captured, subcutaneously implanted with...

Costs of rearing and sex-ratio variation

The broods of most avian species are composed of about equal numbers of males and females. However, under certain circumstances the brood sex ratio has been found to deviate from unity and as such situations are of special interest for evolutionary...

Editor´s Choice - Negative Impact of geolocators

Tiny light-level geolocators with a mass of less than 1 gram give great hopes that it will be possible to reveal the annual migratory journeys of many small songbirds on an individual level, but evidence are also accumulating that equipping a small bird...

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