HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
'Snowbirds' versus real birds

The destruction of tropical forests to create vacation resorts for human "snowbirds" who fly south from Canada and the northern U.S. every winter is creating serious breeding problems for real migratory birds, say Queen's University biologists.

A new study, headed by Ph.D. student Ryan Norris and his advisor, Professor Laurene Ratcliffe, shows for the first time that declining winter habitats of migratory songbirds significantly affect their ability to reproduce when they return north in the spring and the evidence is found in tiny drops of their blood.

The study, highlighted recently in the journal Science, and co-authored by Dr. Peter Marra of the Smithsonian Institute, appears on-line in the current Proceedings of the Royal Society: Biological Sciences, and will be published in an upcoming print edition of Proceedings.

"Our findings help explain why many species of long-distance migratory songbirds have declined over the last few decades," says Mr. Norris, noting that a relatively small geographic band across the Caribbean, Greater Antilles, and central America is the annual destination of an estimated five billion migratory birds flying south each year from Canada. The species in this study is a small, migratory warbler called the American redstart.

Until now, understanding how and why these migratory populations are declining has been a problem, since it is difficult to track individuals throughout their yearly travels. A new technique for detecting "biological signatures" provides the solution.

Using equipment and expertise of the Queen's Facility for Isotope Research (QFIR) headed by geology professor Kurt Kyser, the team measures stable carbon isotopes found in the warblers' blood. These samples are taken immediately after the birds arrive at the university's biological field station north of Kingston, Ontario in the spring.

Since the turnover time of the blood cells is from six to eight weeks, they provid
'"/>

Contact: Nancy Dorrance
dorrance@post.queensu.ca
613-533-2869
Queen's University
12-Dec-2003


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Drugs limit deadly side effects of graft-versus-host disease
2. Infertility treatment versus fertility control: the challenges for developing countries
3. Histone code joins genetic code as critical determinantof chromosomal inheritance: study reveals key properties of silent versus active DNA
4. Mum versus Dad
5. Abgenix initiates phase III clinical trial of graft versus host disease therapy
6. Parasitic cowbirds thrive with a less ruthless strategy than cuckoos
7. A changing landscape may have dire implications for birds
8. Songbirds escaped from Australasia, conquered rest of world
9. Sleepless over Seattle: Migrating songbirds forgo sleep but keep their wits
10. UW study: Migrating birds offer insight into sleep
11. Chemical reaction in birds provides sense of direction during migratory flights

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:5/16/2017)... DALLAS , May 16, 2017   ... for health organizations, and MD EMR Systems ... certified development partner for GE, have established a ... Patient Portal product and the GE Centricity™ products, ... Centricity EMR. These new integrations ...
(Date:4/19/2017)... The global military biometrics market ... by the presence of several large global players. The ... major players - 3M Cogent, NEC Corporation, M2SYS Technology, ... 61% of the global military biometric market in 2016. ... military biometrics market boast global presence, which has catapulted ...
(Date:4/13/2017)... MONICA, Calif. , April 13, 2017 ... New York will feature emerging and evolving ... Summits. Both Innovation Summits will run alongside the expo ... of speaker sessions, panels and demonstrations focused on trending ... coast,s largest advanced design and manufacturing event will take ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... They ... a complex biological network, a depiction of a system of linkages and connections ... Korkin, PhD, associate professor of computer science at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) and ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... Vilnius, Lithuania, announced today that they have entered into a multiyear collaboration to ... provide CRISPR researchers with additional tools for gene editing across all applications. , ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... BioMedGPS announces expanded coverage of ... newest module, US Hemostats & Sealants. , SmartTRAK’s US Market for Hemostats and ... synthetic sealants and biologic sealants used in surgical applications. BioMedGPS estimates the market ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... genomics analysis platform specifically designed for life science researchers to analyze and ... researcher Rosalind Franklin, who made a major contribution to the discovery of ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: