Contrasting reproductive ecology of Black-winged Stilts Himantopus himantopus at two colonies in W Iran


120 – 124

1 August 12

Ahmad Barati, Farzaneh Etezadifar, Vahid N. Sharikabad

Farzaneh Etezadifar
Department of Environment and Energy, Science and Research Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran.


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The reproductive ecology of the Black-winged Stilt Himantopus himantopus (which is little known in Iran and the Middle East) was studied at two breeding colonies in the AghGol (2008) and Shirinsou (2010) wetlands, both in Hamedan Province, W Iran. Data were collected with a particular focus on the timing of breeding, clutch-size, egg characteristics, nest-site parameters and breeding success. Mean clutch-size was 3.4 ±0.9 and varied significantly between the two areas. The width and volume of eggs varied between the two areas, probably because of feeding conditions. Both hatching success and the mean size of newly-hatched broods tended to be higher at Shirinsou than AghGol (0.7 vs. 0.1 for hatching success and 2.27 ±1.75 vs. 0.33 ±0.93 for the mean size of newly-hatched broods). Data from the AghGol wetland suggest that greater distance from water might reduce breeding success when water levels subside during the breeding season leading to increased mortality during the egg and chick rearing periods. Conservation measures for protecting breeding colonies of Black-winged Stilts in the region are discussed.