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Stable isotope ratios in winter-grown feathers of Great Reed Warblers Acrocephalus arundinaceus, Clamorous Reed Warblers A. stentoreus and their hybrids in a sympatric breeding population in Kazakhstan

Yohannes, Elizabeth; Lee, Raymond W.; Jochimsen, Marc C. and Hansson, Bengt LU (2011) In Ibis 153(3). p.502-508
Abstract
Analyses of the stable isotope composition of feathers can provide significant insight into the spatial structure of bird migration. We collected feathers from Great Reed Warblers Acrocephalus arundinaceus, Clamorous Reed Warblers A. stentoreus and a small sample of their hybrids in a sympatric breeding population in Kazakhstan to assess natural variation in stable isotope signatures and delineate wintering sites. The Great Reed Warbler is a long-distance migrant that overwinters in sub-Saharan Africa, whereas the Clamorous Reed Warbler performs a short-distance migration to the Indian sub-continent. Carbon (delta C-13), nitrogen (delta N-15) and deuterium (delta D) isotope signatures were obtained from winter-grown feathers of adult... (More)
Analyses of the stable isotope composition of feathers can provide significant insight into the spatial structure of bird migration. We collected feathers from Great Reed Warblers Acrocephalus arundinaceus, Clamorous Reed Warblers A. stentoreus and a small sample of their hybrids in a sympatric breeding population in Kazakhstan to assess natural variation in stable isotope signatures and delineate wintering sites. The Great Reed Warbler is a long-distance migrant that overwinters in sub-Saharan Africa, whereas the Clamorous Reed Warbler performs a short-distance migration to the Indian sub-continent. Carbon (delta C-13), nitrogen (delta N-15) and deuterium (delta D) isotope signatures were obtained from winter-grown feathers of adult birds. There were highly significant differences in delta D and less significant differences in delta C-13 between Great and Clamorous Reed Warblers. Thus, our results show that the stable isotope technique, and in particular the deuterium (delta D) signal, resolves continental variation in winter distribution between these closely related Acrocephalus species with sympatric natal origin. The isotope signatures of hybrid Great x Clamorous Reed Warblers clustered with those of the Great Reed Warblers. Hence, a parsimonious suggestion is that the hybrids undergo moult in Afrotropical wintering grounds, as do the Great Reed Warblers. The observed delta D values fell within the range of expected values based on available precipitation data collected at precipitation stations across the wintering continents of each species. However, the power to predict the winter origin of birds in our study system using these data was weak as the expected values ranged widely at this broad continental scale. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
carbon, deuterium, hybridization, migration, nitrogen, passerines
in
Ibis
volume
153
issue
3
pages
502 - 508
publisher
Wiley-Blackwell
external identifiers
  • wos:000292478300005
  • scopus:79958778416
ISSN
0019-1019
DOI
10.1111/j.1474-919X.2011.01139.x
project
CAnMove
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
ddcf7d60-4b6e-432e-b0de-ebc62b5fe0c9 (old id 2029029)
date added to LUP
2011-07-26 13:06:44
date last changed
2017-01-01 03:25:23
@article{ddcf7d60-4b6e-432e-b0de-ebc62b5fe0c9,
  abstract     = {Analyses of the stable isotope composition of feathers can provide significant insight into the spatial structure of bird migration. We collected feathers from Great Reed Warblers Acrocephalus arundinaceus, Clamorous Reed Warblers A. stentoreus and a small sample of their hybrids in a sympatric breeding population in Kazakhstan to assess natural variation in stable isotope signatures and delineate wintering sites. The Great Reed Warbler is a long-distance migrant that overwinters in sub-Saharan Africa, whereas the Clamorous Reed Warbler performs a short-distance migration to the Indian sub-continent. Carbon (delta C-13), nitrogen (delta N-15) and deuterium (delta D) isotope signatures were obtained from winter-grown feathers of adult birds. There were highly significant differences in delta D and less significant differences in delta C-13 between Great and Clamorous Reed Warblers. Thus, our results show that the stable isotope technique, and in particular the deuterium (delta D) signal, resolves continental variation in winter distribution between these closely related Acrocephalus species with sympatric natal origin. The isotope signatures of hybrid Great x Clamorous Reed Warblers clustered with those of the Great Reed Warblers. Hence, a parsimonious suggestion is that the hybrids undergo moult in Afrotropical wintering grounds, as do the Great Reed Warblers. The observed delta D values fell within the range of expected values based on available precipitation data collected at precipitation stations across the wintering continents of each species. However, the power to predict the winter origin of birds in our study system using these data was weak as the expected values ranged widely at this broad continental scale.},
  author       = {Yohannes, Elizabeth and Lee, Raymond W. and Jochimsen, Marc C. and Hansson, Bengt},
  issn         = {0019-1019},
  keyword      = {carbon,deuterium,hybridization,migration,nitrogen,passerines},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {3},
  pages        = {502--508},
  publisher    = {Wiley-Blackwell},
  series       = {Ibis},
  title        = {Stable isotope ratios in winter-grown feathers of Great Reed Warblers Acrocephalus arundinaceus, Clamorous Reed Warblers A. stentoreus and their hybrids in a sympatric breeding population in Kazakhstan},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1474-919X.2011.01139.x},
  volume       = {153},
  year         = {2011},
}