Access

You are not currently logged in.

Access your personal account or get JSTOR access through your library or other institution:

login

Log in to your personal account or through your institution.

If You Use a Screen Reader

This content is available through Read Online (Free) program, which relies on page scans. Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.

The Widespread Declines of Songbirds in Rural Britain Do not Correlate with the Spread of Their Avian Predators

David L. Thomson, Rhys E. Green, Richard D. Gregory and Stephen R. Baillie
Proceedings: Biological Sciences
Vol. 265, No. 1410 (Nov. 7, 1998), pp. 2057-2062
Published by: Royal Society
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/51484
Page Count: 6
  • Read Online (Free)
  • Cite this Item
Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
The Widespread Declines of Songbirds in Rural Britain Do not Correlate with the Spread of Their Avian Predators
Preview not available

Abstract

During the last 30 years, there have been marked declines in the populations of many British songbirds breeding on farmland, while two of their main predators, sparrowhawk (Accipiter nisus) and magpie (Pica pica), have spread back into areas from which they had disappeared. The causes of the songbird declines remain unclear but given the coincidence in timing, it might appear that increased predation could be responsible. Although many studies have failed to find links between changes in the populations of breeding songbirds and mortality from avian predators, previous work has, with few exceptions, involved only short-term studies on small spatial scales. Here we use large-scale, long-term data from a national bird census scheme to examine whether magpies and sparrowhawks could have depressed the rates of year-to-year population change in 23 songbird species. Our results indicate that magpies and sparrowhawks are unlikely to have caused the songbird declines because patterns of year-to-year population change did not differ between sites with and without these predators.

Page Thumbnails

  • Thumbnail: Page 
2057
    2057
  • Thumbnail: Page 
2058
    2058
  • Thumbnail: Page 
2059
    2059
  • Thumbnail: Page 
2060
    2060
  • Thumbnail: Page 
2061
    2061
  • Thumbnail: Page 
2062
    2062