Research output: Book/Report › Reports of Research Institute for Nature and Forest
|Publisher||Instituut voor Natuur- en Bosonderzoek|
|Number of pages||111|
|Publication status||Published - 2006|
|Name||Rapporten van het Instituut voor Natuur- en Bosonderzoek|
|Publisher||Instituut voor Natuur- en Bosonderzoek: Brussel|
This methodological study is the result of a 6 month desk study as part of the research andmonitoring program embedded within the long-term vision for the Scheldt estuary (LTV O&M).
The need for this study results from the conclusion that, although results of long-term monthly monitoring of waterfowl show the regional and international importance of the Seascheldt for wintering water birds, we still have little understanding on the precise key features of the estuary underlying this importance. Nevertheless this knowledge is important if we want to understand and evaluate anthropogenic and natural changes in the Scheldt estuary in relation to its function as waterfowl habitat.The questions underlying this study are complex and need an interdisciplinary approach assembling information from various scientific fields (behavioural ecology, demographical ecology, estuarine ecology,…).
Because we don’t know which approach would be the most efficient and tractable method to resolve these complex questions, we evaluate the different methodologies possibly clarifying the posed problems. Moreover, there is need for a strategic plan to investigate the ecological functions of the Seascheldt for wintering and migrating birds.
Based on a literature study and expert judgement we evaluate different research techniques. All methods are tested against the specific conditions in the Seascheldt and against their ability to answer the specific research questions. The feasibility (time investment, logistic needs and financial consequences) and expected results of each method are summarized. Based on this knowledge different research strategies are formulated.
In chapter 4 a survey of the existing datasets in the Scheldt estuary and the current knowledge about five important water bird species (Shelduck, Common teal, Gadwall, Pintail and Pochard) is presented. Next all research techniques are discussed and evaluated (chapter 5). Each discipline (bird trapping, diet research, foraging research, habitat use, wintering strategy and modelling techniques) is evaluated in general and recommendations are formulated in chapter 6.
The formulated research strategy uses a figurative locomotive to pull several smaller research studies as carriage in a flowchart approach. On the first level three work hypotheses are formulated. All ask for a spatial model approach. We propose to combine the datasets in a GISenvironment.
The work hypotheses are:
Proposed research strategies will eventually result in models able to predict/evaluate to some extent effects of:
Additionally the results will give us a better understanding of