First Documented Migration of Individual White-Crested Elaenias (Elaenia albiceps chilensis) in South America

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2016-06-01

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Wilson Ornithological Soc

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Few details are available on the migration (rates, routes, dates) of Neotropical austral migrant birds, which breed and migrate wholly within South America. Only one long-distance austral migrant breeds in the South American temperate forest biome: the White-crested Elaenia (Elaenia albiceps chilensis). However, the migratory dates, routes, and wintering locations are poorly known. During the austral summers of 2011-2013, we attached light level geolocators to breeding White-crested Elaenias at the world's southernmost forests, on Navarino Island, Chile. The duration of fall migration of three Elaenias to the Amazonian wintering grounds was 64-96 days, while spring migration was 45-60 days. The average distance between breeding and wintering grounds was 5,932 km, which constitutes the longest migration of a Neotropical austral migrant studied to date. A better understanding of the annual cycle of Elaenias could offer new opportunities to examine the evolution of migration and population regulation of one of Patagonia's most common birds.

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Wilson Journal Of Ornithology. Waco: Wilson Ornithological Soc, v. 128, n. 2, p. 419-425, 2016.

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