Non-territorial nightingales prospect territories during the dawn chorus

Amrhein, V. and Kunc, H. P. and Naguib, M.. (2004) Non-territorial nightingales prospect territories during the dawn chorus. Proceedings of the Royal Society. Series B, Biological sciences, Vol. 271, Supp. 4. pp. 167-169.

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Official URL: http://edoc.unibas.ch/dok/A5251741

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Male songbirds usually sing when they have occupied a territory, but the territory prospecting of non-territorial males is more elusive and has been rarely studied. Here, we simulated newly arriving, non-territorial males by translocating unmated male nightingales (Luscinia megarhynchos) to our study site. We show that territory prospecting of translocated males was largely confined to the hour before sunrise. The radio-tagged males made extensive excursions visiting several singing males at dawn, but after dawn they remained stationary outside occupied territories. As in many other songbird species, dawn was also the time when resident males sang the most. These results suggest that nonterritorial male nightingales use the dawn chorus to assess singing residents or territory occupancy. For resident males, dawn singing may be important to announce territory occupancy to prospecting males and may thus play a role in territory maintenance.
Faculties and Departments:05 Faculty of Science > Departement Umweltwissenschaften > Integrative Biologie > Behavioural Ecology (Amrhein)
UniBasel Contributors:Amrhein, Valentin
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Publisher:The Royal Society
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
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Last Modified:22 Mar 2012 14:24
Deposited On:22 Mar 2012 13:41

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