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Common montane birds are declining in northern Europe

Lehikoinen, Aleksi; Green, Martin LU ; Husby, Magne; Kalas, John Atle and Lindström, Åke LU (2014) In Journal of Avian Biology 45(1). p.3-14
Abstract
Large-scale multi-species data on population changes of alpine or arctic species are largely lacking. At the same time, climate change has been argued to cause poleward and uphill range shifts and the concomitant predicted loss of habitat may have drastic effects on alpine and arctic species. Here we present a multi-national bird indicator for the Fennoscandian mountain range in northern Europe (Finland, Sweden and Norway), based on 14 common species of montane tundra and subalpine birch forest. The data were collected at 262 alpine survey plots, mainly as a part of geographically representative national breeding bird monitoring schemes. The area sampled covers around 1/4 million km(2), spanning 10 degrees of latitude and 1600 km in a... (More)
Large-scale multi-species data on population changes of alpine or arctic species are largely lacking. At the same time, climate change has been argued to cause poleward and uphill range shifts and the concomitant predicted loss of habitat may have drastic effects on alpine and arctic species. Here we present a multi-national bird indicator for the Fennoscandian mountain range in northern Europe (Finland, Sweden and Norway), based on 14 common species of montane tundra and subalpine birch forest. The data were collected at 262 alpine survey plots, mainly as a part of geographically representative national breeding bird monitoring schemes. The area sampled covers around 1/4 million km(2), spanning 10 degrees of latitude and 1600 km in a northeast-southwest direction. During 2002-2012, nine of the 14 bird species declined significantly in numbers, in parallel to higher summer temperatures and precipitation during this period compared to the preceding 40 yr. The population trends were largely parallel in the three countries and similar among montane tundra and subalpine birch forest species. Long-distance migrants declined less on average than residents and short-distance migrants. Some potential causes of the current decline of alpine birds are discussed, but since montane bird population sizes may show strong natural annual variation due to several factors, longer time series are needed to verify the observed population trends. The present Fennoscandian monitoring systems, which from 2010 onwards include more than 400 montane survey plots, have the capacity to deliver a robust bird indicator in the climate-sensitive mountainous regions of northernmost Europe for conservation purposes. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Journal of Avian Biology
volume
45
issue
1
pages
3 - 14
publisher
Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and Blackwell Publishing Ltd
external identifiers
  • wos:000329866900002
  • scopus:84892500144
ISSN
0908-8857
DOI
10.1111/j.1600-048X.2013.00177.x
project
BECC
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
9d4af950-4ef6-4231-9b7d-28e59b400315 (old id 4319124)
date added to LUP
2014-02-25 14:42:20
date last changed
2017-09-24 03:06:37
@article{9d4af950-4ef6-4231-9b7d-28e59b400315,
  abstract     = {Large-scale multi-species data on population changes of alpine or arctic species are largely lacking. At the same time, climate change has been argued to cause poleward and uphill range shifts and the concomitant predicted loss of habitat may have drastic effects on alpine and arctic species. Here we present a multi-national bird indicator for the Fennoscandian mountain range in northern Europe (Finland, Sweden and Norway), based on 14 common species of montane tundra and subalpine birch forest. The data were collected at 262 alpine survey plots, mainly as a part of geographically representative national breeding bird monitoring schemes. The area sampled covers around 1/4 million km(2), spanning 10 degrees of latitude and 1600 km in a northeast-southwest direction. During 2002-2012, nine of the 14 bird species declined significantly in numbers, in parallel to higher summer temperatures and precipitation during this period compared to the preceding 40 yr. The population trends were largely parallel in the three countries and similar among montane tundra and subalpine birch forest species. Long-distance migrants declined less on average than residents and short-distance migrants. Some potential causes of the current decline of alpine birds are discussed, but since montane bird population sizes may show strong natural annual variation due to several factors, longer time series are needed to verify the observed population trends. The present Fennoscandian monitoring systems, which from 2010 onwards include more than 400 montane survey plots, have the capacity to deliver a robust bird indicator in the climate-sensitive mountainous regions of northernmost Europe for conservation purposes.},
  author       = {Lehikoinen, Aleksi and Green, Martin and Husby, Magne and Kalas, John Atle and Lindström, Åke},
  issn         = {0908-8857},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {1},
  pages        = {3--14},
  publisher    = {Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and Blackwell Publishing Ltd},
  series       = {Journal of Avian Biology},
  title        = {Common montane birds are declining in northern Europe},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1600-048X.2013.00177.x},
  volume       = {45},
  year         = {2014},
}