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Old 08-06-2009, 06:41 PM   #1
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Default Early Experience Affects Where Birds Breed For Life: What Happens If Habitat Changes?

Early Experience Affects Where Birds Breed For Life: What Happens If Habitat Changes?
ScienceDaily (Feb. 25, 2008) How young migratory birds choose the nesting location of their first breeding season has been something of a mystery in the bird world. But a new University of Maryland/National Zoo study of the American redstart suggests that the environmental conditions the birds face in their first year may help determine where they breed for the rest of their lives, a factor that could significantly affect the population as climate change makes their winter habitats hotter and drier.

Early Experience Affects Where Birds Breed For Life: What Happens If Habitat Changes?
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"We found that where the birds go in their first winter, a process called natal dispersal, may determine the area, within several hundred miles, where they will breed over their lifetime," said Colin Studds, the University of Maryland PhD student who led the study. "An important factor appears to be the availability of water in their winter habitat."
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