Incubation behavior of the Dotterel Charadrius morinellus in Finland
Incubation behaviour of the Dotterel Charadrius morinellus was studied in Finnish Lapland (67°44'N, 29°37'E) particularly in 1969 and 1971 during 75.6 days, The total amount of absences was appr, 19.0% of the time. When both the male and the female incubated, the nest was occupied for about 95% of the time; in nests with only the male, this figure ranged between 70 and 90%. In one unsuccessful nest, this was below 65%. The duration of periods off were on average 5.3 min. in the nest incubated by two birds, between 8.7 and 34.6 min. in the rest. In the morning the ground temperature has to exceed 8°C on average before the birds are prepared to spend 20% of their time off eggs. The mean length of periods off decreased significantly with advancing incubation, but not the total time off the eggs. Our results differed in many respects from those observed in south Norway (e.g. daily rhythm and the lengths of periods off). This is probably best explained by a lower availability of food and smaller predation pressure in our study area.
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