Restoring avian island endemics; supplementary food use by the endangered Pink pigeon (Columba mayeri)

Kelly Edmunds, Nancy Bunbury, Shivananden Sawmy, Carl G. Jones, Diana J. Bell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The wild population of Pink Pigeons (Columba mayeri) of Mauritius has recovered from ten individuals in 1990 to ~390 birds in 2008. Limited availability of native feeding habitat is a primary factor restricting further increases in population. Current management of the species includes provision of supplementary food (wheat) and restoration of native forest habitat. This study investigated dependence on supplementary food by examining patterns of supplementary food use and social interactions in two Pink Pigeon subpopulations. During 72 h of observations over a 10-week study period 99% of the birds visited supplementary feeding stations, and the combined duration of these visits per individual was 0–1.7% of the total observation period. Frequency of visits peaked in late afternoon and timing of feeding visits also varied between sexes in one subpopulation, where males fed for longer after daytime nest incubation (1600–1800 hours) than females, and females fed for longer than males throughout the middle of the day (1000–1300 hours). Younger birds (
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)74-80
Number of pages7
JournalEmu
Volume108
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 13 Mar 2008

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