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The phenology of Song Thrush Turdus philomelos, Redwing Turdus iliacus and Blackbird Turdus merula spring migration



The phenology of Song Thrush Turdus philomelos, Redwing Turdus iliacus and Blackbird Turdus merula spring migration



Alauda 71(4): 447-458



The chronology of spring migration of Song Thrush Turdus philomelos, Redwing Turdus iliacus and Blackbird Turdus merula was studied using human and automatic recording of flight calls from 1992 to 1996 on migratory routes mainly in the French Mediterranean areas but also on the Rhine-Rhone on the Atlantic axis. For each site the presence or the absence of passage was noted as well as the number of calls per species per 15 minute-period from February to mid April. Song Thrush movements are characterized by a main passage in early March with a secondary peak in late March. For Redwing a first migration peak was noted in late February and a second one in mid March. Unfortunately very little data concerning Blackbird was collected, but it seems there is a first passage in late February with a second in mid March. The time span of the survey seems to be adapted to the timing of turdid migration (23h00 to 03h00). Although this methodology is well adapted to the characterisation of the timing of spring migration, it is necessary to establish a permanent monitoring of thrush movements in order to have a better understanding of the whole phenomenon and to associate this programme with research of other biological themes.

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