Eudocimus albus

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Scientific Name
Eudocimus albus
Common Name
American White Ibis
White Ibis
Taxa Group
Move Mode

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Data package

Data from: The movements of a recently urbanized wading bird reveal changes in season timing and length related to resource use

2020-02-27, Kidd-Weaver, Anjelika, Hepinstall-Cymerman, Jeffrey, Welch, Catharine C., Murray, Maureen H., Adams, Henry C., Ellison, Taylor J., Yabsley, Michael J., Hernandez, Sonia M.

The American white ibis (Eudocimus albus) is a nomadic wading bird that is increasingly foraging in urban areas in parts of its range, relying on artificial wetlands and other anthropogenic resources year-round. In this study, we explore whether and how individual association with urban environments is predictive of consistent changes in behavioural season timing and length. Other urbanized species exhibit altered annual cycles such as loss of migratory behavior and year-round breeding in response to consistent resource abundance, often related to intentional and unintentional provisioning. We used behavioral change point analysis to segment the tracks of 41 ibis equipped with GPS backpacks to identify differences in the initiation and duration of four behavioral seasons (non-breeding, pre-breeding, breeding, post-breeding) related to use of urban habitats. We found that intraspecific variation in urban habitat use had strong carryover effects on the timing and duration of behavioral seasons. In particular, ibis with higher urban habitat use in non-breeding seasons had longer non-breeding seasons and shorter breeding seasons that started earlier in the year compared to ibis that primarily use wetland habitats. This study reveals interesting behavioral patterns for a nomadic species with populations that are recently expanding into urban areas, providing evidence that ibis are adapting their annual cycles and seasonal behaviors to exploit urban resources.