Spatial patterns in at-sea behaviour during spring migration by little gulls( Larus minutus) in the southeastern North Sea

Little Gull (Hydrocoloeus minutus) Science Article 1


At-sea distribution of seabirds has been studied on different scales and with different focus in many parts of the world. However, factors and/or processes causing certain patterns are often not easily explained. This also holds true for fast migrating species of international conservation concern, such as the little gull (Larus minutus) in the German Bight (southeastern North Sea). In this study, we used multiyear distributional data in combination with behavioural observations and food sampling to investigate spatial and temporal patterns and their possible causes during spring migration. The results show a highly focussed migration pattern during the last week of April and the .rst week of May. The river Eider seemed to play an important role as main migration route. Highest numbers were found either close to the mainland or close to the o.shore islands.

Philipp Schwemmer and Stefan Garthe, J Ornithol (2006) 147: 354-366

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