Migratory network reveals unique spatial-temporal migration dynamics of Dunlin subspecies along the East Asian-Australasian Flyway

Lagasse B.J., Lanctot R.B., Brown S., Dondua A.G., Kendall S., Latty C.J., Liebezeit J.R., Loktionov E.Y., Maslovsky K.S., Matsyna A.I., Matsyna E.L., McGuire R.L., Payer D.C., Saalfeld S.T., Slaght J.C., Solovyeva D.V., Tomkovich P.S., Valchuk O.P., Wunder M.B.

В журнале PLOS ONE

Год: 2022 Том: 17 Номер: 8 ArticleID: e0270957

Determining the dynamics of where and when individuals occur is necessary to understand population declines and identify critical areas for populations of conservation concern. However, there are few examples where a spatially and temporally explicit model has been used to evaluate the migratory dynamics of a bird population across its entire annual cycle. We used geolocator-derived migration tracks of 84 Dunlin (Calidris alpina) on the East AsianAustralasian Flyway (EAAF) to construct a migratory network describing annual subspecies-specific migration patterns in space and time. We found that Dunlin subspecies exhibited unique patterns of spatial and temporal flyway use. Spatially, C. a. arcticola predominated in regions along the eastern edge of the flyway (e.g., western Alaska and central Japan), whereas C. a. sakhalina predominated in regions along the western edge of the flyway (e.g., N China and inland China). No individual Dunlin that wintered in Japan also wintered in the Yellow Sea, China seas, or inland China, and vice-versa. However, similar proportions of the 4 subspecies used many of the same regions at the center of the flyway (e.g., N Sakhalin Island and the Yellow Sea). Temporally, Dunlin subspecies staggered their south migrations and exhibited little temporal overlap among subspecies within shared migration regions. In contrast, Dunlin subspecies migrated simultaneously during north migration. South migration was also characterized by individuals stopping more often and for more days than during north migration. Taken together, these spatial-temporal migration dynamics indicate Dunlin subspecies may be differentially affected by regional habitat change and population declines according to where and when they occur. We suggest that the migration dynamics presented here are useful for guiding on-the-ground survey efforts to quantify subspecies’ use of specific sites, and to estimate subspecies’ population sizes and long-term trends. Such studies would significantly advance our understanding of Dunlin space-time dynamics and the coordination of Dunlin conservation actions across the EAAF.

DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0270957