Key factors that influence breeding performance in raptors
breeding perfomanceraptorsavian species
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Breeding performance is a broad term, the definition of which varies throughout the literature. In raptor species it is frequently used as an expression that refers to the total number of nestlings that adults can raise to a prescribed age per breeding attempt, however it has also been defined in terms of clutch size, hatching success, and nestling quality (Steenhoff and Newton 2007). Assessing the breeding performance of raptors (combined with assessment of adult survival rates) is crucial to understanding the health and condition of populations and the degree to which they are likely to persist in a given habitat (Newton 1979; Steenhoff and Newton 2007). Raptors are frequently apex predators in terrestrial habitats, and as a result the study of their breeding success can also be used as a performance based indicator in ecological restoration and monitoring initiatives (Stout et al 2006; Martin et al 2008). Therefore this review aims to give a comprehensive summary of the theoretical and empirical evidence provided in the literature that has been used to identify the key factors that influence breeding performance in raptors and how these apply to both conservation initiatives and future research.
Paviour, J. (2013) 'Key factors that influence breeding performance in raptors', The Plymouth Student Scientist, 6(1), p. 398-411.
University of Plymouth
The Plymouth Student Scientist