Series: WIWO Report Series Volume: 52
64 pages, b/w illustrations, b/w distribution maps, tables
Since 1991 volunteers of the Foundation Working Group International Waterbird and Wetland Research (WIWO) yearly organize expeditions to the Taimyr peninsula in northern Siberia, Russia. Main aim of these expeditions has been to determine breeding densities and success of the bird species breeding here, with special emphasis on waders. Many of these species migrate through or winter in westem Europe. In 1994 an expedition was organized to Cape Wastochnia, near the mouth of the Pyasina river in cooperation with the IBN-DLO institute. This site was also visited by WIWO in 1993 and by IBN-DLO yearly since 1990. The scope of the latter institute has been mainly on breeding Brent Geese.
As during earlier expeditions to Taimyr, the main aim of the 1994 expedition was censusing bird breeding densities and success. All species except for passerines have been investigated in a 16 km2 research plot. Densities were determined by searching nests, which were followed during the rest of the season to determine the breeding success. This method probably gives a slight underestimation of several species and determined densities should thus be considered the minimum present.
As expected from observations in earlier years, 1994 was a lemming peak year. As a result of the high lemming densities, many species nested in relatively good numbers. In total 19 species were found. Of 15 species the numbers were counted, resulting in a total of 196 pairs. Among these were typical lemming predators like Snowy Owl, Pomarine Skua and R-1 Buzzard. The most common species was Little Stint with 95 nests found. Breeding densities of most wader species were comparable to 1993. Of the nests followed during incubation, 82% hatched. Predation rates varied between species and within the plot, but were lower than in the intermediate year 1993. The presence of an occupied Arctic Fox burrow at the border of the plot accounts for much of the predation. Further a small part of the nests was deserted for unknown reasons. The relatively cold and windy weather after 10 July might account partly for this.
Much effort was also put in catching and ringing birds. In total 532 birds of 15 species were ringed.
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