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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Supplemental feeding fails to enhance annual survival rate of a reintroduced hihi Notiomystis cincta population on Mokoia Island (Lake Rotorua), Bay of Plenty, New Zealand

Published source details

Armstrong D.P. & Perrott J.K. (2000) An experiment testing whether condition and survival are limited by food supply in a reintroduced hihi population. Conservation Biology, 14, 1171-1181

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Provide supplementary food for nectar-feeding songbirds to increase adult survival Bird Conservation

A controlled before-and-after study on Mokoia Island, Lake Rotoruais, North Island, New Zealand (Armstrong & Perrot 2000), found that stitchbirds (hihi) Notiomystis cincta used feeders providing 20% by weight sugar solution frequently and when feeders were present they spent more time foraging for insects and less time foraging for fruit and nectar. However, there were no differences in weight gain or loss or survival rates when feeders were present, compared to when they were not. Feeders were present for 16 days at a time and then removed for 12 days. This alternation continued between January and November 1995. Annual survival in the population was low (38%) and the population appeared likely to decline despite feeding.