Nesting and reproductive characteristics of Coots


Published: Volume 46(2), December 1999. Pages 179-186.

Language: English

Keywords: Algeria, clutch size, Coot, egg size, Fulica atra and hatching success.


Variation in dimension of nests (external diameter, cup diameter and height), water depth at nesting sites, clutch sizes, egg sizes and hatching success was studied in Coots Fulica atra nesting on two lakes in Algeria in 1996-1997. The main idea of this paper is to provide basic data on the breeding ecology of Coots in the southern part of the species geographic area and to compare breeding characteristics between Lakes Oubeira and Tonga. Water depth at the place of nesting and nest dimensions differed significantly between the lakes, while clutch sizes, hatchling numbers and egg dimensions were not different. Relatively many complete clutches (11%) contained only one egg. The dates of laying onset were significantly different between years 1996 and 1997 on Lake Oubeira but not between Lake Oubeira and Lake Tonga in 1997. A generalised linear model showed that hatching success (the number of eggs hatched per clutch) was dependent on both years and lakes (as factors), laying date, egg volume and water depth at nesting sites but independent of clutch size. Egg dimensions showed significant but not very high repeatabilities (0.35-0.47).

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