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Distribution and population numbers of water-bound breeding birds in Vienna in the years 1995-1999 Verbreitung und Bestand der Brutvoegel an den Gewaessern in Wien 1995-1999

, : Distribution and population numbers of water-bound breeding birds in Vienna in the years 1995-1999 Verbreitung und Bestand der Brutvoegel an den Gewaessern in Wien 1995-1999. Egretta. Februar; 441-2: 89-137

In the period 1995-1999 (especially in 1997 and 1998) a survey of water-dependent breeding birds was undertaken in the province of Vienna. A total of 125 bodies of water (118 standing waters, 3 slowly flowing waters, 4 small rivers) in 8 areas were monitored. A list of water bodies studied is given in Appendix 1, which details their sizes (waterbodies and reedbeds) and habitat as well as the intensity of monitoring. The standing waters were subdivided into small waters (up to 1 ha; 47.9 %), medium-sized waters (1.0-5.0 ha; 35.0 %) and large standing waters ( > 5.0 ha; 17.1 %). The sizes vary between 0.05 and 71.0 ha. 103 standing waters support reedbeds, which vary in size from 0.001 to 12.7 ha. They could be subdivided into small reedbeds ( < 0.3 ha; 73.8 %), medium-sized reedbeds (0.3-1.0 ha; 15.5 %) and large reedbeds ( > 1.0 ha; 10.7 %). 19 bodies of water offer areas of shingle and gravel, 27 have banks or lakesides with vertical faces and old trees could be found near 48. All species were considered whose occurrence in Vienna largely or fully depends on standing or slowly flowing waters. During the monitoring period 36 such species could be recorded, of which 22 species breed regularly and 3 breed irregularly. For 11 species there were indications of possible or probable breeding. Numbers of the more common species at each body of water are given in appendix 2. Population trends can be seen from the data in Table 3. A total of 1,217-1,655 territories (including breeding pairs) could be found; the three most common species (Mallard, Moorhen and Reed Warbler) represent nearly two thirds of all territories. Vienna's waters have nationwide importance for the following non-threatened species: Black Swan (the population has since collapsed), Canada Goose, Mandarin Duck (these three are not native breeding species), Mallard, Moorhen and Reed Warbler. Of the breeding birds listed in the Red List for Austria, the Viennese populations of Little Bittern, Black Kite and Great Reed Warbler represent an important part of the entire Austrian population. Furthermore the probable breeding of Purple Heron (one pair) and Little Crake is noteworthy, 18 bodies of water are classified as important (listed in table 4), of which three fulfill the criteria given in Dvorak et al. (1994) for nomination as nationally important standing waters for breeding waterfowl.

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