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Breeding ecology studies of Collared Pratincoles Glareola pratincola in the Central Hauts Plateaux of Algeria

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Pages
43 – 48

Published
11 April 14

Authors
Ettayib Bensaci, Nacéra Boutera, Abdelkader Cherief, Menouar Saheb, Aissa Moali, Moussa Houhamdi

Correspondence
Ettayib Bensaci
bensacitayeb@yahoo.fr
Département SNV, Université de M’sila, Algeria

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The breeding biology of Collared Pratincoles Glareola pratincola was studied for the first time in Algeria in 2010 at a natural salt lake at Dayet El Kerfa, in the semi-arid Hauts Plateaux. The breeding attempts of 35 pairs on three different islets were monitored. The mean laying date was 13 May (range: 28 April to 2 June). Mean clutch size was 2.0, but 47% of the nests had one or three eggs. Hatching success was 97%; only one nest failed. Clutch size, egg size, nest dimensions and hatching success did not vary between nests placed in the centre of an islet and nests closer to the shore. Our study contrasts with results reported for other Mediterranean breeding areas (in Morocco, France and Spain), showing differences in laying dates, clutch size and laying period. The beginning of egg laying at Dayet El Kerfa was three weeks later than on the N Atlantic coast of Morocco (28 April at Dayet El Kerfa and 7 April in Morocco), three weeks earlier than in Spain and two weeks earlier than in France. Clutch sizes were smaller than in other breeding areas in the Mediterranean basin. The range of hatching dates (25 days) was less than half that reported for a coastal area in Morocco; this is probably related to the almost complete absence of nest predators at Dayet El Kerfa, so no pairs renested. The hatching success of 97% was the highest of all breeding sites in the Mediterranean basin.