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Reproduction of the southern house wren troglodytes aedon aves troglodytidae in the cauca valley colombia

Reproduction of the southern house wren troglodytes aedon aves troglodytidae in the cauca valley colombia

Caldasia 14(66): 85-124

The breeding biology of the southern house wren was investigated at 24 nests between May 1977 and Feb. 1979 in the Cauca Valley ( 32' 20" N, 31' 57" W, 976 m), Colombia. Eleven adults and 33 juveniles were banded for individual identification. Males maintained permanent, multiple purpose territories throughout the year. Preliminary estimates of territory size ranged from 0.12-0.28 ha. Pair bonds lasted several nestings in succession, and all changes in composition of the pairs followed disppearance of one of the members. Nest-boxes were readily accepted. Male and female cooperated in nest building but the latter contributed most of the material during the final stage. Building lasted from 8-37 days. Eggs were laid early in the morning at intervals of about 24 h and averaged 18.5 .times. 13.5 mm and 1.9 g. Clutch size range from 2-4 eggs, and averaged 3.2. One female laid 7 clutches (20 eggs) in 17 months, with a minimum interval of 48 days between clutches. Females alone incubated and devoted 65-88% of her diurnal time to this chore. Incubation period averaged 15 days, and hatching was either serial or simultaneous. For the 1st 7 days after hatching the female brooded the young for 37% of her diurnal time. Both parents fed the young, the contribution by the female being significantly greater. Young were fed at an hourly average rate of 2.8 times per capita. Lepidoptera, grasshoppers, and spiders together accounted for 80% of the items brought to the nestlings. After fledging the young were fed for about 2 wk. Young fledged between 16 and 21 days after hatching. Their development and behavior are described, and growth curves are given for body weight and length of 1st primary. Some juveniles stayed in the parental territories for as long as 3 mo. after fledging, and coincided with 2nd nestings by their parents during this period but did not play any role in the rearing of siblings. Productivity averaged 2.8 fledglings per brood, a 90.2% nesting success. Breeding activity was recorded in every month of the year except March. Peaks of breeding in April and Nov.-Dec. coincided with rainfall peaks.

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