Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Feed the birds: Winter feeding makes for better breeding

06.02.2008
Keep feeding the birds over winter: that’s the message from research by Queen’s University Belfast and the University of Exeter.

Their study, published today in the Royal Society journal Biology Letters, shows for the first time that extra food provided to garden birds in winter makes for a more successful breeding season in the following spring.

By providing some birds with extra food, such as peanuts, and leaving others to fend for themselves, the team was able to compare reproductive success between the two groups.

Those that were given extra food laid eggs earlier and, although the same number of chicks hatched, on average one more successfully fledged per clutch. Although it was well known that feeding birds during winter increases their survival, this is the first time that the benefits to subsequent breeding have been shown.

Leading the research, Gillian Robb, from Queen’s University School of Biological Sciences said “Our study shows that birds that receive extra food over winter lay their eggs earlier and produce more fledglings.”

Dr Stuart Bearhop from the University of Exeter, who supervised the research, said “We show that extra food provided in winter helps the birds that take it, however, we are still unclear whether it has a knock on effect on other species. Nevertheless, I will certainly be continuing to feed the birds in my garden for the rest of the winter.”

Dr Dan Chamberlain of the British Trust for Ornithology, a collaborator on the project, added “These results demonstrate that feeding birds over winter can be vital to their breeding success. It is highly likely that the benefits of extra food continue year-round, so don’t just stock your bird feeders in winter if you want to do the best for the birds in your garden”.

Despite this, there is a continuing debate on whether we should feed birds during the spring, when natural food sources increase.

Lisa Mitchell | alfa
Further information:
http://www.qub.ac.uk

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht The Great Unknown: Risk-Taking Behavior in Adolescents
19.01.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung

nachricht A sudden drop in outdoor temperature increases the risk of respiratory infections
11.01.2017 | University of Gothenburg

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Helmholtz International Fellow Award for Sarah Amalia Teichmann

20.01.2017 | Awards Funding

An innovative high-performance material: biofibers made from green lacewing silk

20.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ion treatments for cardiac arrhythmia — Non-invasive alternative to catheter-based surgery

20.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>