The occurence of two allopatric snipe Gallinago spp. in the Azores Islands

Doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.13157/arla.60.1.2012.113

Authors: Tiago M. RODRIGUES and David GONÇALVES

E-mail: trodrigues@cibio.up.pt

Published: Volume 60(1), June 2013. Pages 113-121.

Language: English

Summary:

The Azores archipelago is located in the North Atlantic, consequently observations of birds of both Palearctic and Nearctic origin are not rare there. We evaluate the local occurrence of two allopatric snipe, the common snipe Gallinago gallinagoand Wilson’s snipe G. delicata. A hurdle model for fortnightly snipe counts on São Miguel Island suggests an arrival of foreign birds in October-November. Morphological characteristics were used to identify both snipe species among birds shot during hunting seasons on Pico and São Miguel Islands. The Nearctic Wilson’s snipe is an annual winter visitor to the archipelago, representing from 8% of the hunting bags on Pico up to 56% on São Miguel. Further studies, using emerging technologies, may shed light on the origin of the migratory birds and their interaction with the local common snipe breeders.

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