Study

Nest site preference by greylag geese Anser anser in reedbeds of different harvest age

  • Published source details Kristiansen J.N. (1998) Nest site preference by greylag geese Anser anser in reedbeds of different harvest age. Bird Study, 45, 337-343.

Actions

This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Mow or cut reedbeds

Action Link
Bird Conservation

Cut/mow herbaceous plants to maintain or restore disturbance: brackish/salt marshes

Action Link
Marsh and Swamp Conservation

Cut/mow herbaceous plants to maintain or restore disturbance: freshwater marshes

Action Link
Marsh and Swamp Conservation
  1. Mow or cut reedbeds

    A site comparison study in two wetland sites in Vejlerne, a wetland in North Jutland, Denmark (Kristiansen 1998), found that the highest densities of greylag geese Anser anser nests were found in reedbeds that were cut between five and eleven or five and 12 years before (3.1-3.4 nests/ha). No nests were found in beds cut that year and very few (and only in one site) in beds cut less than three years (fewer than 0.7 nests/ha) or more than eleven years before. The authors speculate that geese need an intermediate density of reed stems to nest effectively.

     

  2. Cut/mow herbaceous plants to maintain or restore disturbance: brackish/salt marshes

    A site comparison study in 1994 of two reedbeds in a fresh/brackish wetland in Denmark (Kristiansen 1998) found that a recently cut reedbed supported a lower density of tall common reed Phragmites australis with a smaller basal area than a more mature reedbed, although reed diameter was similar in both areas. In a reedbed cut two years before measurement, tall common reed stems were less dense (217 stems/m2) than in a more mature reedbed, cut seven years before measurement (422 stems/m2). However, the diameter of these reed stems did not significantly differ between the reedbeds (recently cut: 2.9; more mature: 3.1 mm). Combining these metrics, tall reed stems occupied a smaller proportion of the more recently cut reedbed (1,497 mm2/m2) than the more mature reedbed (3,014 mm2/m2). Methods: In 1994, vegetation was surveyed around 14 points in each of two reedbeds: one last cut in 1992 and one last cut in 1987. The reedbeds had been commercially harvested for “many years” previously. Most points were around (but approximately 2 m from) greylag goose Anser anser nests. At each point, all reed stems >75 cm tall were counted in four 0.25-m2 quadrats. Twenty stems/quadrat were measured.

    (Summarised by: Nigel Taylor)

  3. Cut/mow herbaceous plants to maintain or restore disturbance: freshwater marshes

    A site comparison study in 1994 of two reedbeds in a fresh/brackish wetland in Denmark (Kristiansen 1998) found that a recently cut reedbed supported a lower density of tall common reed Phragmites australis with a smaller basal area than a more mature reedbed, although reed diameter was similar in both areas. In a reedbed cut two years before measurement, tall common reed stems were less dense (217 stems/m2) than in a more mature reedbed, cut seven years before measurement (422 stems/m2). However, the diameter of these reed stems did not significantly differ between the reedbeds (recently cut: 2.9; more mature: 3.1 mm). Combining these metrics, tall reed stems occupied a smaller proportion of the more recently cut reedbed (1,497 mm2/m2) than the more mature reedbed (3,014 mm2/m2). Methods: In 1994, vegetation was surveyed around 14 points in each of two reedbeds: one last cut in 1992 and one last cut in 1987. The reedbeds had been commercially harvested for “many years” previously. Most points were around (but approximately 2 m from) greylag goose Anser anser nests. At each point, all reed stems >75 cm tall were counted in four 0.25-m2 quadrats. Twenty stems/quadrat were measured.

    (Summarised by: Nigel Taylor)

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