Aves, p�le ornithologique de Natagora

Consultez les articles du Bulletin Aves !


Retour à la liste des articles

Aves, 50/2 | 2013 | 65-79

  Mortality causes and age structure of the European Kingfisher Alcedo atthis in Europe
Roland Libois & François Libois

Article is available in pdf Download the French article in pdf (396 Kb)

Article summary

This study reviews all available data for the European kingfisher in Europe (Euring database). The analysis of the mortality causes based on 966 juveniles and 753 adults reveals that a large proportion of the carcasses (43%) are just reported as “found dead”. Other major causes of mortality listed in the database include percussions against a window (22%), collisions with engines (10%), other types of collisions (5%) or predation by domestic cats (5%). For both adults and juveniles, predation by cats is the most common death cause in Great Britain while in North Western Europe, mortality is mostly due to the percussion against windows. Juvenile mortality is highest at the end of the summer and in autumn, while adults decease mostly in the spring. The European kingfisher lifespan is short. Its demographic structure, studied in 4028 juveniles and 1181 adults, shows that mortality is very important during the first winter, as 70 % of the juveniles do not reach the next spring. The mortality rate is similar in subsequent reproductive seasons. The different pyramids of age are not identical (between adults and juveniles, between regions, between sexes) but the trend is similar: a reproductive individual has a probability of one third to reproduce the next year. Less than 10% of the European kingfishers survive over four years.


  • Roland Libois
    Laboratoire de zoogéographie,
    Université de Liège, Bâtiment B22
    Boulevard du Rectorat 27
    B-4031 Sart Tilman (Liège)

    François Libois
    Centre de recherche en économie
    du développement (CRED)
    Facultés universitaires de Namur

Articles on the same species

Martin-pêcheur d'Europe
Alcedo atthis

Consultez la fiche de l'espèce

Articles on the same species

Chouette hulotte (Strix aluco), Cincle plongeur (Cinclus cinclus), Corneille noire (Corvus corone), Épervier d'Europe (Accipiter nisus), Faucon crécerelle (Falco tinnunculus), Grand-duc d'Europe (Bubo bubo)

Articles published in the same bulletin