Das Raum- und Gesangsverhalten von männlichen Nachtigallen in der Brutsaison: Radiotelemetrische Untersuchungen

Translated title of the contribution: Nightingales in space: Song and extra-territorial forays of radio tagged song birds

Marc Naguib*, Rainer Altenkamp, Benjamin Griessmann

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

37 Citations (Scopus)


Most temperate zone passerines defend territories during the breeding season. Commonly the size of these territories is estimated by plotting the singing locations of the males. However, an individual's activities need not be restricted to the area used for singing. So far, only little quantitative information has been available to determine how the singing territory relates to the activity range of male songbirds. Here, we present a study in which we used radio-tracking techniques to collect quantitative data on the spatial behaviour of 11 male territorial Nightingales (Luscinia megarhynchos). The results show that the singing territories made up only about 50% of the activity ranges. Nevertheless, males spent over 90° of the time within the singing territory. Singing territories almost never overlapped but activity ranges overlapped in all cases with the activity range of at least one neighbour. Males intruded into neighbouring territories throughout the season but the longest excursions were made before and during the female fertile period. The time spent for forays correlated significantly with song rate and territories of males with higher song rates in turn were less frequently the object of forays by other males. Song rate can be indicative of male quality, so that our findings strongly suggest that foray behaviour is related to male quality in nightingales.

Original languageGerman
Pages (from-to)306-312
Number of pages7
JournalJournal fur Ornithologie
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 21 Dec 2001
Externally publishedYes

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