Breeding behaviour of the Kentish plover (Charadrius alexandrinus) in a salt marsh from the Eastern High Plateaux, northeast Algeria

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Journal of King Saud University – Science
Abstract The reproductive biology and nesting site selection of the Kentish plover, Charadrius alexandrinus, were investigated in a semi-arid salt marsh from the Eastern High Plateaux, northeast Algeria. The present study describes for the first time the breeding behaviour of this plover in the Eastern High Plateaux. On the natural ecosystem of Sebkhet Ouled M’Barek, egg-laying occurred from mid-April to late May, with peak in the last week of April. Mean clutch size was 2.71 ± 0.58 (n= 45), and incubation period was 27.0± 0.9 days. Hatching success amounted to 69.6%± 6.4 (45 clutches) and an average of 2.0± 0.2 chicks hatched per nest. In this study we observed that incubating plovers usually nested near water edge and very close to a heterospecific nest. Three aspects make this population distinct from most other Kentish plover populations studied to date. It is characterised by a late onset of egg-laying, short egg-laying period and high rate of breeding success. Nevertheless, the present study shows that the mean clutch size, egg volume and incubation period were comparable to those known for other Mediterranean populations. Anthropogenic pressures, habitat loss as well as lack of management plans are major threats of this population. 2016 The Authors. Production and hosting by Elsevier B.V. on behalf of King Saud University. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-NDlicense (