Breeding success, migration and wintering in Eleonora's Falcon

Thomas Hadjikyriakou, during his PhD studies, has investigated the reproductive success of Eleonora's Falcon (Falco eleonorae) in Cyprus, following suggestions in earlier studies that levels were too low to maintain the breeding population. With a combination of camera traps (see video), and photographs taken from boats at sea and using drones, he has been able to better estimate how many eggs are laid, how many nestling are raised, and how many young fledge. Using photogrammetry, he has been able to identify the extent of suitable nesting sites for the species (see Hadjikyriakou et al. 2020, The Condor). Thomas has also tracked movements of birds throughout the annual cycle, using GPS/GSM/UHF transmitter technology, showing where birds forage during the breeding season, their migration route to and from Madagascar (see Hadjikyriakou et al. 2020, Movement Ecology), and their preferred wintering habitats (Fig. 1) (see Kassara et al. 2017, Scientific Reports; Hadjikyriakou et al. 2020, Landscape Ecology).

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Figure 1. Monthly (32-day windows) home ranges (95 % kernels) of Eleonora’s falcons from Greece (ELEF02 and ELEF05) and Cyprus (CYPR01 and CYPR03), which provided data for more than one years, illustrated on an outline map of Madagascar