Rivista Italiana di Ornitologia - Research in Ornithology (2015-12-01)

Waders (Aves, Charadriiformes) in a Mediterranean remnant wetland: a year-round pilot study evidences contrasting patterns in diversity metrics

  • Corrado Battisti,
  • Aldo Boano,
  • Michele Cento,
  • Amedeo Circosta,
  • Sergio Muratore

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 85, no. 1


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Around a yearly cycle (August 2011 - July 2012), we studied the assemblages of waders (Aves Charadriiformes) occurring in a Mediterranean remnant wetland, obtaining a set of diversity metrics. Mean total abundance shows a complementary pattern when compared to species richness and diversity: the highest values of mean total abundance were observed in December-January, due to high dominance of only one very abundant and gregarious species (the lapwing Vanellus vanellus). On the contrary, in this period, species richness and diversity showed the lowest values. These last metrics were highest in values during the April-September period when a large number of species of conservation concern utilize muddy areas as trophic and stop-over sites, due to the seasonal water stress. The highest values in species turnover index were observed between December-January and February-March when passage migrants (high richness, low abundance) substitute the wintering species (low richness, high abundance). Our data highlight that, in Mediterranean remnant wetlands, strategies should be addressed to increase the muddy suitable areas in the April-September period in order to maximize species richness and diversity. In fact, in these months these habitats host pre- and post-breeding migrant waders of conservation concern.