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New perspectives on acceleration logging

This week a new review paper by CAnMove researchers together with danish collegues was published in Journal of Comparative Physiology A, concluding that accelerometer recording of the annual activity patterns of individual birds will open up a new dimension in bird migration research.
Daytime activity scores during different periods and phases of the annual cycle of a red-backed shrike, based on accelerometer data.
Daytime activity scores during different periods and phases of the annual cycle of a red-backed shrike, based on accelerometer data.

The use of accelerometers has become an important part of biologging techniques for large-sized birds with accelerometer data providing information about flight mode, wing-beat pattern, behaviour and energy expenditure. Such data show that birds using much energy- saving soaring/gliding flight like frigatebirds and swifts can stay airborne without landing for several months. Successful accelerometer studies have recently been conducted also for free-flying small songbirds during their entire annual cycle.

In this paper, the authors review the principles and possibilities for accelerometer studies in bird migration by using the first annual actograms (for red-backed shrike Lanius collurio) to explore new analyses and insights that become possible with accelerometer data.

To the paper: "Actogram analysis of free-flying migratory birds: new perspectives based on acceleration logging" by Johan Bäckman, Arne Andersson, Lykke Pedersen, Sissel Sjöberg, Anders P. Tøttrup and Thomas Alerstam.

 

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Centre for Animal Movement Research
Evolutionary Ecology, Department of Biology
Ecology building S-223 62 Lund Sweden