April 21 2010

12:00 LSB 2320

Kristen Ruegg
Hopkins Marine Station, Stanford University

"Migratory connectivity in the Swainson's thrush, Catharus ustulatus, and beyond"


Over the last thirty years, scientists and birdwatchers alike have noted precipitous population declines in many species of migratory songbirds. However, the transitory nature of migratory birds makes it difficult to pinpoint the exact cause of such declines. As a consequence, developing effective management strategies remains elusive. Recently, efforts to correlate breeding, wintering, and migratory populations have utilized genetic and isotopic markers to identify breeding populations and then use these as tags to track individuals along their migratory pathway. While this approach has uncovered broad-scale migratory patterns, the next step is to utilize new genomic sequencing technologies, and newly developed statistical methods that combine genetic and isotopic data, in order to more precisely identify wintering, breeding and migratory stopover areas. Focusing on data from the Swainson’s thrush, Catharus ustulatus, I will discuss the importance of understanding patterns of migratory connectivity to studies of ecology evolution, and conservation of migratory birds and conclude with a description of plans to integrate genomic data with isotopic data to further pinpoint patterns of migratory connectivity in a number of migratory bird species.











































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































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