Seasonal variations in habitat preferences of the pin-tailed sandgrouse in agrarian pseudo-steppes

Authors: Carlos A. MARTÍN, FabiÁn CASAS, François MOUGEOT, Jesús T. GARCÍA and Javier VIÑUELA


Published: Volume 57(1), June 2010. Pages 191-198.

Language: English


We investigated habitat use and preferences of pin-tailed sandgrouse Pterocles alchata in agrarian pseudo-steppes of central Spain. We used radio-tracking to characterise habitat selection throughout the year and look for seasonal variations. Pin-tailed sandgrouses selected ploughed fields all year round, except in winter when they preferred stubble fields. Pasturelands were used more often than expected in the breeding and post-breeding seasons and fallows in winter and pre-breeding seasons. Cereal crops, olive groves and vineyards were avoided. Our results indicate that appropriate habitat management for the pin-tailed sandgrouse should take into consideration its habitat preferences during the full annual cycle.

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