Aves, p�le ornithologique de Natagora

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Aves, 54/4 | 2017 | 189-202

  Food resource of Eurasian Bittern Botaurus stellaris at Virelles pond. Analysis of historical data.
Philippe Deflorenne

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Article summary

The Virelles pond is long-known for its reed bedsand and their attractiveness for the Eurasian Bittern. Following a period of fifteen years, between 2001 and 2015, during which numbers were stable, the observations of this species have been in significant decline. As part of the Belgian Nature Integrated Project (LIFE14 IPE/BE/000002), we have analysed the data of fish counts made when the lake is drained. This article focuses on the food preferences of the Bittern and the correlations between its presence and the numbers of various species of fish. We conclude that Bittern numbers vary with the numbers of small fish and that the presence of carp does not appear to have any direct effect.


  • Philippe Deflorenne
    Rue Nanon 98
    5000 Namur