Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Translocate individualsA review of 239 bird translocation programmes found 63–67% resulted in establishment of self-sustaining populations.  Collected, 30 Sep 2012 12:46:30 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Translocate megapodesA replicated study from Indonesia found that up to 78% of maleo Macrocephalon maleo eggs hatched after translocation, with higher success if eggs were reburied as they were found. There was only anecdotal evidence that the translocations increased local populations.  Collected, 30 Sep 2012 12:49:00 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Translocate petrels and shearwatersTwo studies from Australia and one from New Zealand found that colonies of burrow-nesting Procellariiformes were successfully established on two islands, and in uninhabited areas of another following the translocation and hand-rearing of chicks.  Collected, 30 Sep 2012 12:54:24 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Translocate pelicansTwo reviews of a brown pelican Pelecanus occidentalis translocation programme in the USA found high survival of translocated nestlings and that the target population grew enormously, to over 16,000 nests. The authors note that some of the growth may have been due to immigration from the source populations.  Collected, 30 Sep 2012 12:58:02 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Translocate auksA replicated study in the USA and Canada found that 20% of 774 translocated Atlantic puffins Fratercula arctica remained in or near the release site, with up to 7% breeding.  Collected, 30 Sep 2012 13:02:20 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Translocate wildfowl Three studies of two duck translocation programmes in New Zealand and Hawaii found high post-release survival, breeding and the successful establishment of new populations. A replicated study in USA found that none of 391 blue-winged teal Querquedula discors stayed in the release site and that there was high mortality after release. A replicated, controlled study in the USA found that wing-clipping female wood ducks Aix sponsa during translocation prevented them from abandoning their ducklings.  Collected, 30 Sep 2012 13:18:26 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Translocate gamebirds Three studies from the USA found that translocation of gamebirds resulted in population establishment or growth, or an increase in lekking sites. Four studies from the USA found high survival of translocated birds, although one, from Alaska found that translocated birds had high initial mortality, which then fell to levels close to those in resident birds. Two studies from the USA found high mortality in translocated birds. Four studies from the USA found breeding rates that were high, or similar to resident birds, amongst translocated birds.  Collected, 30 Sep 2012 13:50:44 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Translocate rails Three reviews of two translocation programmes in the Seychelles and New Zealand found high survival amongst translocated rails. All studies found that translocated birds bred successfully, although one found that translocated takahe Porphyrio hochstetteri had lower reproductive success than birds in the source population. The other New Zealand study found no differences in breeding success between recently and formerly translocated takahe.  Collected, 30 Sep 2012 13:58:55 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Translocate raptors Six studies of three translocation programmes in the UK and the USA found that all three successfully established populations of white-tailed eagles Haliaeetus albicilla, red kites Milvus milvus and ospreys Pandion halieatus. However, the latest review of the programme to reintroduce red kites to England and Scotland reported that one of six populations was very small, with only four pairs, despite 90 birds being released. A replicated study in Spain found high survival and establishment of translocated Montagu’s harrier Circus pygargus fledglings.  Collected, 30 Sep 2012 14:09:28 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Translocate herons, storks and ibisesA before-and-after study in the USA found that a colony of black-crowned night herons Nycticorax nycticorax was successfully moved, with the new colony producing chicks the year after translocation.  Collected, 30 Sep 2012 14:25:50 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Translocate owls A small study from New Zealand found that translocating two male boobook Ninox novaeseelandiae novaeseelandiae allowed the establishment of a small population, when they interbred with the last remaining Norfolk Island boobook N. n. undulata A replicated study in the USA found high survival amongst burrowing owls Athene cunicularia translocated as juveniles, although no breeding was recorded and all birds left the release site and were not seen again.  Collected, 30 Sep 2012 14:32:21 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Translocate woodpeckers All five translocation programmes studied were for red-cockaded woodpeckers Picoides borealis in the southern USA. Six studies of four programmes found that >50% of translocated birds remained in their new sites, with two studies of the same programme reporting a large population increase. Birds from four programmes were reported as forming pairs or breeding, although some translocated pairs split up and some translocated nestlings were abandoned. One study found that translocated nestlings fledged at similar rates to native chicks.  Collected, 30 Sep 2012 14:34:11 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Translocate parrots Three studies of two translocation programmes from the Pacific and New Zealand found that populations of parrots were successfully established on islands following translocations, including the colonisation of other islands in the New Zealand study. Survival of translocated birds was monitored in five studies of four programmes from across the world and ranged from 41% over 60 days for red-fronted parakeets Cyanoramphus novaezelandiae in New Zealand to 98% for kakapos Strigops habroptila in New Zealand. Survival for translocated thick-billed parrots Rhynchopsitta pachyrhyncha in the USA was higher than for captive-bred birds. Despite very high survival, kakapos that were translocated had very low reproductive output in New Zealand.  Collected, 30 Sep 2012 14:41:44 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Translocate songbirds Nine studies from across the world, including a review of 31 translocation attempts in New Zealand found that translocations led to the establishment of songbird populations. The review found that 79% and 100% of translocation programmes for saddlebacks Philesturnus carunculatus and New Zealand robins Petroica australis, respectively, were successful in establishing populations. Eight of the studies were from islands, mostly following predator removal. Three studies from Zimbabwe, New Zealand and the USA report on three translocation programmes that failed to establish populations. A methodological paper found that the nesting success of saddlebacks decreased as the latitudinal difference between source area and release site increased.  Collected, 06 Oct 2012 12:49:36 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Use techniques to increase the survival of species after capture A small controlled study from the USA found that providing dark, quiet environments with readily-available food and water increased the survival of small birds after capture and increased the probability that they would accept captivity. A study from Hawaii found that keeping birds warm in a ‘mock’ translocation in Hawaii increased survival, although all birds suffered some loss of condition.  Collected, 06 Oct 2012 21:18:18 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Ensure translocated birds are familiar with each other before releaseTwo controlled trials from New Zealand found no evidence that translocating birds which were familiar with each other was more likely to succeed than translocating unfamiliar birds.  Collected, 06 Oct 2012 21:23:28 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Ensure genetic variation to increase translocation success We did not find any studies on the effects of ensuring genetic variation in translocated birds. 'No evidence' for an action means we have not yet found any studies that directly and quantitatively tested this action during our systematic journal and report searches. Therefore we have been unable to assess whether or not the action is effective or has any harmful impacts. Please get in touch if you know of such a study for this action.  Collected, 06 Oct 2012 21:25:41 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Translocate nests to avoid disturbance Four small trials from the USA and a replicated study from Chatham Island, New Zealand found some success in relocating nests whilst they were in use. However, one study from the USA found that only 40% of burrowing owls Athene cunicularia were moved successfully, another found that American kestrels Falco sparverius tolerated movement of their nest, but not repeated disturbance and another found that barn swallow Hirundo rustica may follow their nest as it is slowly moved on a car, but may not stay at the new site.  Collected, 06 Oct 2012 21:27:21 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Use vocalisations to attract birds to safe areas Six studies from North America, the Galapagos and the Azores found that seabirds were more likely to nest in areas where vocalisations were played, or were successfully attracted to nest in new areas, following the playing of vocalisations. Four of these studies used several interventions at once. One study found that some calls were more effective than others. Two studies from the USA and the Galapagos found that birds did not colonise all new areas where vocalisations were played. It is possible that the result from the Galapagos was due to only having a single year’s data. One controlled study from Hawaii found that albatross were more likely to land in areas where vocalisations were played than in areas without vocalisation playback. A small controlled study from New Zealand found that terns were not more likely to land in areas where vocalisations were played.  Collected, 06 Oct 2012 21:54:59 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Use decoys to attract birds to safe areas Seven studies found that birds bred in areas where decoys (of birds or nests) were used to attract birds. Six of the studies used several interventions at once. Two studies from the USA found that least terns Sterna antillarum and herons were not attracted to new areas to breed when decoys were used. Five studies from North America and France and Spain found that more birds landed near decoys than in control areas. The two studies to compare decoy types found that three-dimensional models were better than two-dimensional ‘cut-outs’ and plastic models of birds were better than rag decoys.  Collected, 06 Oct 2012 22:25:17 +0100Collected Evidence: Collected Evidence: Alter habitat to encourage birds to leave an areaA single before-and-after study in the USA found that an entire Caspian tern Sterna caspia population moved following (amongst other interventions) the alteration of nesting habitat at the old colony site.  Collected, 06 Oct 2012 22:42:09 +0100
What Works 2021 cover

What Works in Conservation

What Works in Conservation provides expert assessments of the effectiveness of actions, based on summarised evidence, in synopses. Subjects covered so far include amphibians, birds, mammals, forests, peatland and control of freshwater invasive species. More are in progress.

More about What Works in Conservation

Download free PDF or purchase
The Conservation Evidence Journal

The Conservation Evidence Journal

An online, free to publish in, open-access journal publishing results from research and projects that test the effectiveness of conservation actions.

Read the latest volume: Volume 21

Go to the CE Journal

Discover more on our blog

Our blog contains the latest news and updates from the Conservation Evidence team, the Conservation Evidence Journal, and our global partners in evidence-based conservation.

Who uses Conservation Evidence?

Meet some of the evidence champions

Endangered Landscape ProgrammeRed List Champion - Arc Kent Wildlife Trust The Rufford Foundation Save the Frogs - Ghana Mauritian Wildlife Supporting Conservation Leaders
Sustainability Dashboard National Biodiversity Network Frog Life The international journey of Conservation - Oryx Cool Farm Alliance UNEP AWFA Bat Conservation InternationalPeople trust for endangered species Vincet Wildlife Trust