State of the art of the knowledge of Chilean raptor birds: Present situation and future projections

Raimilla, Victor - Rau, Jaime R. - Munoz Pedreros, Andres
Datos de publicación:
birds of prey - Chile - conservation - research priorities - threatened species
Increasing global interest for studying birds of prey has lead to the need to identify research priorities to better focus conservation efforts. In Chile, studies on raptors date back to 1891, and the number of publications has considerable increased in the last decades. To our knowledge, however, analysis on information gaps and research priorities is lacking. Based on the published information from 1970 and 2011, we assessed the current state of knowledge for Chilean raptors to identify the topics where information is absent or is insufficient and to determine what information is a research priority. We analyzed the information according to species, species groups (diurnal and nocturnal), research topics and geographical area where the studies were conducted. We found that the number of papers increased linearly with time, but the tendency was strong biased toward only two species (Tyto alba, Geranoaetus polyosoma). Most studies focused on diet and were with an interest more pronounced towards nocturnal than diurnal raptors. The remainder of topics was only moderately or poorly studies. The least studied raptors were migrant species (Buteo swainsoni, Pandion haliaetus, Circus buffoni), forest specialist (Strix rufipes. Accipiter bicolor, Buteo ventralis and B. albigula) and members of the genus Phalcoboenus, most of which have some conversation problem. The number of studies by geographical area was similar between diurnal and nocturnal raptors. Remarkably, a high proportion of studies concentrated in the Metropolitan Region of Chile. We conclude that research must be focused on (a) poorly studied and threatened species, (b) scarcely studied topics such as migration, population density, taxonomy, management, parasites and use and selection habitat, and (c) species inhabiting remote islands, fragmented or human-modified landscapes, and heavily populated areas.

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