Parental differences in brood provisioning by Hen Harriers Circus cyaneus

Leckie, Fiona M.; Arroyo, Beatriz E.; Thirgood, Simon J.; Redpath, Stephen M. 2008 Parental differences in brood provisioning by Hen Harriers Circus cyaneus. Bird Study, 55 (2). 209-215.

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Aims To quantify how parents balance the needs of their offspring for food and protection. Methods We studied 13 nests from hides and spent on average 101 hours per nest monitoring prey types, provisioning rate and the time spent at the nest by both sexes in relation to brood size and brood age. Results Males always provided more food than females. Males brought similar amounts of prey items irrespective of brood size and nestling age, whereas females brought more prey and bigger items to larger and older broods. Females spent less time brooding larger broods, particularly early on. Conclusions Hen Harrier parents share the provisioning burden, with each parent delivering prey as a function of brood care requirements, hunting capability and the behaviour of the other parent.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
Programmes: CEH Programmes pre-2009 publications > Biodiversity > BD01 Conservation and Restoration of Biodiversity > BD01.3 Population and community processes
UKCEH and CEH Sections/Science Areas: _ Biodiversity & Population Processes
ISSN: 0006-3657
Additional Keywords: Hen Harrier, Circus cyaneus, sexual differences, brood provisioning, parental investment
NORA Subject Terms: Zoology
Date made live: 23 May 2011 09:45 +0 (UTC)

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