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open-access-imgOpen AccessGoshawk predation during winter, spring and summer in a boreal forest area of central Sweden
Widén Per
Publication year1987
Publication title
Resource typeJournals
PublisherBlackwell Publishing Ltd
Predation by goshawks was studied in a central Swedish boreal forest area. Data were collected in winter (January–February) 1977‐81 by tracking radio‐tagged goshawks, and in the breeding season (April–July) by collecting prey remains at the nest. In the breeding season birds dominated the prey, amounting to 86% of prey number and 91% of prey biomass. Wood pigeon Columba palumbus , black grouse Tetrao tetrix , hooded crow Corvus corone cornix and jay Garrulus glandarius accounted for more than 50% of the prey animals, whereas capercaillie Tetrao urogallus and black grouse accounted for more than 50% of prey biomass. There was no functional response to black grouse density fluctuations. Every year goshawks killed significantly more females than males of both capercaillie and black grouse, due to high vulnerability of the grouse hens while laying and incubating. It was estimated that during spring and early summer goshawk predation removed 25% of the female, and 14% of the male black grouse population. In winter squirrel was the dominating prey, both in terms of number (79%) and weight (56%). The proportion of squirrel in the diet was equally high both in winters of low and high squirrel density. The high proportion of squirrel in the winterdiet, as compared to the breeding season, is believed to be due to squirrels having to accept an increased predation risk in winter, in order to feed efficiently enough.
Subject(s)biochemistry , biology , demography , ecology , grouse , habitat , nest (protein structural motif) , population , predation , seasonal breeder , sociology , taiga
SCImago Journal Rank2.973

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