Bananaquit (Coereba flaveola) and Orangequit (Euneornis campestris) body condition in response to shade coffee habitat in the Blue Mountains of Jamaica

Mckenzie M. Trainor, Matthew D. Johnson, Herlitz Davis

Abstract


Coffee farms can provide habitat for wildlife, but previous research suggests that variation in cultivation practices, especially the amount of shade cover, can affect the body condition of migratory birds. In turn, body condition can carry over to the breeding season and affect reproductive performance. Less work has been done on year-round residents in coffee, and very little is known about how variation in coffee farm vegetation may affect their body condition. We studied the effects of habitat on body condition in two non-migratory songbirds common in Jamaican coffee farms, Bananaquits (Coereba flaveola) and Orangequits (Euneornis campestris), across five coffee farms in the Blue Mountains of Jamaica. We hypothesized that variation in coffee habitat, especially shade cover, influences body condition of these resident birds. To assess body condition, we ran a principal component analysis on anatomical measurements to obtain a multivariate measure of body size and then performed an ANCOVA to determine if size-adjusted mass differed between farms. Although body condition differed significantly among farms, we found no clear relationships with local habitat features assessed, and the underlying causes for the observed variation in body condition were unclear. Examining landscape characteristics and determining individual survival rates and food availability could give more insight into the underlying reasons for our observed variation in body condition.

Las granjas cafetaleras pueden brindar hábitats para la vida silvestre, pero investigaciones previas sugieren que variaciones en las prácticas de cultivo, especialmente en la cantidad de sombra, puede afectar la condición corporal de las aves migratorias. A su vez, esta condición corporal se puede mantener hasta la temporada reproductiva y afectar el desempeño reproductivo. Una menor cantidad de trabajos se han hecho en especies residentes permanentes en cafetales y es poco lo que se conoce acerca de cómo la variación en la vegetación de cafetales puede afectar la condición corporal de estas especies. Estudiamos los efectos del hábitat en la condición corporal de dos paseriformes no migratorias muy comunes en los cafetales jamaiquinos, Coereba flaveola y Euneornis campestris, en cinco cafetales en las Blue Montains de Jamaica. Nuestra hipótesis es que la variación en los hábitats de cafetales, especialmente en la cantidad de sombra, influye en la condición corporal de estas aves residentes. Para estimar la condición corporal, llevamos a cabo un análisis de componentes principales con las medidas anatómicas para obtener medidas multivariadas del tamaño corporal y llevar a cabo un ANCOVA para determinar si la masa corregida por el tamaño difería entre cafetales. Aunque la condición corporal difirió significativamente entre cafetales, no encontramos una relación clara con las características del hábitat evaluadas y no fueron claras las causas subyacentes de la variación observada en la condición corporal. El examen de las características del paisaje y la determinación de las tasas de supervivencia individuales y la disponibilidad de alimentos pueden dar una visión más clara de las razones subyacentes en la variación observada en la condición corporal.

Les plantations de café peuvent fournir un habitat pour la faune, mais des recherches antérieures suggèrent que les variations induites par les pratiques culturales, notamment le taux de couverture ombragée, peuvent affecter la condition corporelle des oiseaux migrateurs. Celle-ci peut ensuite influencer la reproduction et en affecter les performances. Peu de travail a été réalisé sur les oiseaux présents toute l’année dans les plantations de café, et l’influence des variations de la végétation de ces plantations sur leur condition corporelle est très peu connue. Nous avons étudié les effets de l’habitat sur la condition corporelle de deux espèces non migratrices communes dans les plantations de café jamaïcaines, le Sucrier à ventre jaune (Coereba flaveola) et le Pique-orange de Jamaïque (Euneornis campestris), dans cinq plantations des Blue Mountains en Jamaïque. Nous avons émis l’hypothèse que la variation de l’habitat dans ces plantations, en particulier la couverture ombragée, pouvait influencer la condition corporelle des oiseaux sédentaires. Pour évaluer la condition corporelle, nous avons réalisé une analyse en composantes principales sur les mesures anatomiques afin d’obtenir une mesure multivariée de la taille du corps, puis nous avons effectué une analyse de covariance pour déterminer si la masse ajustée à la taille variait selon les plantations. Bien que la condition corporelle soit significativement différente entre les plantations, nous n’avons trouvé aucune relation claire avec les caractéristiques locales de l’habitat évalué. Les causes sous-jacentes des variations de la condition corporelle observées sont donc restées incertaines. L’examen des caractéristiques du paysage ainsi que la détermination du taux de survie individuelle et de la disponibilité alimentaire pourraient donner plus d’informations sur les raisons sous-jacentes des variations de la condition corporelle que nous avons observées.


Keywords


Bananaquit; body condition; Coereba flaveola; coffee farms; Euneornis campestris; habitat quality; Orangequit; shade grown coffee

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