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公益財団法人 日本鳥類保護連盟は野鳥をはじめとする野生生物の保護と普及啓発を目的とする団体です。

― Today Birds, Tomorrow Man ―

The Little Tern Migration Route(Austral-Asia)

 Poster Presentation at the 26th International Ornithological Congress


Australia-Asia Little Tern Sterna albifrons Geolocator Project

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The Ministry of Environment has declared the little tern as a Class II Endangered species on the Japanese Red Data list and considers the little tern a rare protected species by the International Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora regulation. In order to help conserve the species we must not only protect their breeding areas, wintering areas but their stopover sites as well. According to research data, little terns breeding in Japan are thought to be wintering in the south-eastern Australia but due to lack of field research their stopover sites are not known. The lack of data is because the little tern is too small to attach heavy equipment such as GPS, until now. In 2013, we attached units called geolocators to little terns in Ibaraki, Chiba, Tokyo, Shizuoka and Osaka, a total sum of 100 units. A geolocator is a device which records light intensity and time allowing us to track the migration route. The unit plus the ID flag weighing in at just 1.2 grams, makes it safe to use on such a small species. And, in 2014, of the 100 geolocators deployed we were successful in retrieving 8 units. Of the 8 units retrieved data from 4 were recovered and analyzed. Although we must continue to investigate our data and increase its reliability, we managed to successfully collect and read information vital to our research.

1.    According to our data one migration route traveled directly from Japan to Australia and another route which showed little terns to be utilizing the island chains in the Philippines and Indonesia to head south and using the islands again on their way back.

2.    South-eastern Australia has long been thought as the preferred wintering site for the little tern but based
  on data retrieved by the 4 geolocators, little terns may be wintering in the Philippines and Papua New
  Guinea instead.  The large amount of data surrounding south-eastern Australia may be due to the large
  number of researchers and not because of a flourishing little tern population.


3.    We have only collected data from 4 individuals, but wintering sites differ from one bird to the other.

4.    A new theory suggests that there might be an individual which crosses from Japan to Asia and then heads south to the wintering site.  Since geolocators are said to have an error margin of 200-300 meters the data retrieved must be investigated further before considered 100% accurate.

In the future, we must retrieve more data in order to accurately investigate their wintering sites and stopover sites and to aid in conservation of the little tern


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This Project is funded by The Mitsui & Co. Environment Fund.

三井物産環境基金 ←Click here!

バナースペース

公益財団法人 日本鳥類保護連盟
Japanese Society for Preservation of Birds

〒166-0012
東京都杉並区和田3-54-5
第10田中ビル 3階

TEL 03-5378-5691
FAX 03-5378-5693

3rd floor, the 10th Tanaka Bldg,
54-5, Wada, 3-chome, Suginami-ku, Tokyo #166-0012,
Japan

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