Birds in Latin American cities respond to humans differently than in Europe

Journal Science of The Total Environment has recently published new outcomes of the Federico Morelli team dealing with escape behaviour of Latin American birds. Researchers conclude that 81 avian species across the region from Mexico to Tierra del Fuego show a different response to human observers (considered as potential predators) than those known from Europe. The flight initiation distance (FID; the distance at which individual birds take flight when approached by a potential predator) in 19 Latin American cities was described significantly shorter in urban parks than in cemeteries, contrary to European birds habits. Moreover, FID was shorter in areas with higher human density and build-up landscape, hence significantly decreased on an analyzed scale from peri-urban to suburban up to urban areas. The results indicate the need for vigilance and consideration of regional differences when the application of conservation measures is needed.

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Citation: Federico Morelli, Lucas M. Leveau, Peter Mikula, Ian MacGregor-Fors, M. Lucia Bocelli, Sergio Gabriel Quesada-Acuna, César González-Lagos, Pablo Gutiérrez-Tapia, Gabriela Franzoi Dri, Carlos A. Delgado-V., Alvaro Garitano Zavala, Jackeline Campos, Rubén Ortega-Álvarez, A. Isain Contreras-Rodríguez, Daniela Souza López, Maria Cecília B. Toledo, Andres Sarquis, Alejandro Giraudo, Ada Lilian Echevarria, María Elisa Fanjul, María Valeria Martínez, Josefina Haedo, Luis Gonzalo Cano Sanz, Yuri Adais Pena Dominguez, Viviana Fernandez, Veronica Marinero, Vinícius Abilhoa, Rafael Amorin, Carla Suertegaray Fontana, Thaiane Weinert da Silva, Sarah Sandri Zalewski Vargas, Juan F. Escobar Ibanez, María Dolores Juri, Sergio R. Camín, Luis Marone, Augusto Joao Piratelli, Alexandre Gabriel Franchin, Larissa Crispim, Julieta Benitez, Yanina Benedetti, Are birds more afraid in urban parks or cemeteries? A Latin American study contrasts with results from Europe, Science of The Total Environment, Volume 861, 2023, 160534, ISSN 0048-9697,

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