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BOER RS DE, BAUER S, JEUGD HP VAN DER, ENS BJ, GRIFFIN L, CABOT D, EXO KM, NOLET BA & K&oUML;LZSCH a (2014) A comparison of spring migration between three populations of Barnacle Geese Branta leucopsis using GPS-satellite-transmitters. LIMOSA 87 (2): 99-106.

With the help of GPS technology it has recently become possible to track individual birds on migration in great detail. In this study we use GPS satellite transmitters to compare spring migration of three populations of Barnacle Goose in space and time: the Russian, Svalbard and Greenland populations. Populations differed in their migration patterns and stopover use, which can be related to differences in routes, in particular whether they had to cross any large-scale barriers during migration (Tab. 1, Fig. 1). Within populations, however, migration patterns also differed remarkably between individuals, especially in the Svalbard and Russian populations, with some individuals even ‘skipping’ stopovers altogether and flying ‘directly’ to the breeding grounds (Fig. 2). Within the Greenland population less variability was observed, possibly because these birds need to cross two stretches of ocean during spring migration, which might not allow for variation in migration patterns. Overall, Barnacle geese show a remarkable variability in individual migration patterns.

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limosa 87.2 2014
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