Monday, 12 March 2018

Biosciences Science Club Series 13 March 2018

Biosciences Science Club Series - Winter 2018
13 March 2018 - 12pm - Wallace Lecture Theatre (140)

Individual variation in fitness components in migratory white storks (Ciconia ciconia)

Dr Shay Rotics

We are delighted to welcome Dr Shay Rotics, from the Department of Zoology at the University of Cambridge (UK). Shay is an ecologist, especially interested in behavioural ecology and conservation science. He has recently started his Blavatnik Research Fellowship at LARG (the Large Animal Research Group at the Department of Zoology at Cambridge University), after completing his PhD on Movement - fitness relationships in white storks at the Movement Ecology Group at the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Behavior at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (Israel).

Migration facilitates the exploitation of seasonally abundant food resources and favorable climate, yet, migration is also considered costly and risky. In my PhD study I investigated individual variation in survival and breeding success of white storks in light of their long-distance migration. Solar GPS-body-acceleration transmitters were used to monitor movement, behavior, and energy expenditure proxy (derived from overall dynamic body acceleration, ODBA) of juveniles (<1 year) and adults, which were coupled with environmental data. Using these multifaceted data, we found that the juveniles’ early life behavior, fall migration flight attributes and wintering decisions could illuminated juvenile survival differences. We further examined the spring return migration of the adults which provided insights on the causes of individual differences in arrival time to breeding grounds and consequently on breeding success. The research identified key factors that affect survival and breeding success in white storks and demonstrated the feasibility of addressing fitness components in the wild while combining high-resolution, multifaceted tracking and environmental data.

Hope to see many of you - everyone most welcome to attend!

For the list of forthcoming seminars see here

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