An open-content, electronic journal published by the Animal Demography Unit
at the University of Cape Town

Maximum longevities and causes of death in kingfishers from SAFRING data.

Sanjo Rose

Abstract: There are 10 species of kingfisher in southern Africa. This note aims to summarize the longevity values of these species, as well as investigate the main causes of death. All except Mangrove Kingfishers have longevity values. The greatest elapsed time is for the Giant Kingfisher at 8.01 years whilst the shortest lived is the Striped Kingfisher at 1.97 years. On average, the most ringed species is the Malachite Kingfisher with 3471 initial ringing records. The species with the greatest reporting rate is the Brown-hooded at 21.7%. A total of 67 recovery records have cause of death assigned to them. 21 of these are caused by collisions with man-made structures whilst 24 have cause of death listed as 'unknown' or 'found dead'. The high collision risk is especially of concern as it typically occurs during migration and at night, colliding with lit-windows. Overall, ringing effort has been relatively poor but despite this, the reporting rate is relatively high which is optimistic for future ringing efforts.

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