Ardea
Official journal of the Netherlands Ornithologists' Union

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Delgado S., Aldalur A., Herrero A. & Juan Arizaga J. (2020) No evidence supporting sex-dependent differential movements and survival in Yellow-legged Gulls. ARDEA 108 (2): 4-4
Important biological parameters, such as movement and survival, can differ substantially between sexes, driving the demographic patterns of a population. Sex-dependent spatial segregation at the foraging grounds can evolve as a mechanism to reduce competition for resources between sexes, among other causes. Investigating such segregation, especially in scenarios of decreasing food availability, can contribute to understanding how birds adapt to a fast-changing world. The aim of the present study was to determine whether year-round movements and survival varied between sexes within a resident Yellow-legged gull Larus michahellis population. To this end we used live encounter data on colour-ringed Yellow-legged Gulls in northern Spain in the period 2009–2017. We used Generalized Linear Models to analyse distance to the colony of origin and multi-state models to estimate both survival and year-round movements, which did not provide evidence supporting an effect of sex on movement and survival. In contrast, distances travelled from the natal colony varied between seasons and all gulls were more likely to move greater than 100 km from natal sites. Juveniles showed lower survival rates (0.55) than older birds (0.90). Future research with GPS data might help to reveal, if existing, the occurrence of local spatial segregation between sexes that otherwise remains undetected.


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