Publications by authors named "Łukasz Myczko"

9 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Does Traditional Feeding of Outdoor Guard Dogs Provide a Food Resource for Wild Mammals and Birds?

Animals (Basel) 2021 Apr 22;11(5). Epub 2021 Apr 22.

Department of Zoology, Poznań University of Life Sciences, Wojska Polskiego 71 C, 60-625 Poznań, Poland.

Access to food is crucial in the life of birds and affects reproduction, survival and, consequently, population size. In the case of bird species inhabiting villages, poorer food conditions now exist, mainly because of changes in the lifestyle of rural residents and a reduction in the number of farm animals traditionally housed in backyards. Recent changes have also affected dog populations in villages, and the majority of them are no longer kept outside as guard dogs, but rather inside houses as pets. We investigated how traditional care of dogs impacted rural birds and other animal populations. The study was carried out at the end of winter and early spring in 29 farmsteads in western Poland. Using camera traps, it was found that the food fed to dogs was also taken by seven species of birds and at least three species of mammals. The most numerous species taking dog food was the house sparrow, , which is declining in Europe. In the case of this species, females were more likely than males to use food given to dogs, with a clear preference for food prepared in the human kitchen. We conclude that the food provided to domestic pets can be an important component of the diet of wild birds and mammals living close to humans.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ani11051198DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8143549PMC
April 2021

Difference on cone size preferences between two coniferous species by Great Spotted Woodpecker ().

PeerJ 2017 31;5:e3288. Epub 2017 May 31.

Institute of Zoology, Poznań University of Life Sciences, Poznań, Poland.

The number of species that specialize in pre-dispersal seed predation is relatively small. Examples of specialized pre-dispersal seed predators adapted to feeding on closed cones include vertebrate species like Crossbills, Squirrels, Nutcrackers and Woodpeckers. Seed predation selects against certain phenotypic features of cones and favors another phenotypic features. In this study, we document preferences of the Great Spotted Woodpecker () for specific traits in the cones of Norway spruce () and Scots pine (). We found that the Great Spotted Woodpecker prefers to feed on medium sized Norway spruce cones. The results suggest a disruptive selection that favors the extreme cone lengths in Norway spruce. In Scots pine, the woodpeckers avoided cones with large apophyses. Further, the selectivity for the specific characteristics of the cones is probably related to the configuration of the anvil, a place at which woodpeckers extract seeds from the cones. We think that the Great Spotted Woodpecker preferences in relation to the morphological characteristics of cones are a key to the design of the anvil in order to maximize the use of it as a tool for processing cones of both the Norway spruce and the Scots pine.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.7717/peerj.3288DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5455344PMC
May 2017

Co-occurrence of birds and bats in natural nest-holes.

Ibis (Lond 1859) 2017 Jan 9;159(1):235-237. Epub 2016 Dec 9.

Institute of Zoology Poznań University of Life Sciences Wojska Polskiego 71 C, 60-625 Poznań Poland.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ibi.12434DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7165987PMC
January 2017

Habitat preferences of two sparrow species are modified by abundances of other birds in an urban environment.

Curr Zool 2016 Aug 27;62(4):357-368. Epub 2016 Jul 27.

Institute of Zoology, Poznań University of Life Sciences, Wojska Polskiego 71 C, 60-625 Poznań.

Every species has certain habitat requirements, which may be altered by interactions with other co-occurring species. These interactions are mostly ignored in predictive models trying to identify key habitat variables correlated with species population abundance/occurrence. We investigated how the structure of the urban landscape, food resources, potential competitors, predators, and interaction between these factors influence the abundance of house sparrow and the tree sparrow in sixty 25 ha plots distributed randomly across residential areas of the city of Poznań (Poland). The abundance of the house sparrow was positively correlated with the abundance of pigeons but negatively correlated with human-related food resources. There were significant interaction terms between abundances of other urban species and habitat variables in statistical models. For example, the abundance of house sparrow was negatively correlated with the abundance of corvids and tree sparrows but only when food resources were low. The abundance of tree sparrows positively correlated with density of streets and the distance from the city center. The abundance of this species positively correlated with the abundance of corvids when food resources were low but negatively correlated at low covers of green area. Our study indicates that associations between food resources, habitat covers, and the relative abundance of two sparrow species are altered by the abundance of other urban species. Competition, niche separation and social facilitation may be responsible for these interactive effects. Thus, biotic interactions should be included not only as an additive effect but also as an interaction term between abundance and habitat variables in statistical models predicting species abundance and occurrence.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/cz/zow069DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5829444PMC
August 2016

Urbanization affects neophilia and risk-taking at bird-feeders.

Sci Rep 2016 06 27;6:28575. Epub 2016 Jun 27.

Department of Avian Biology &Ecology, Faculty of Biology, Adam Mickiewicz University, Umultowska 89, PL-61-614 Poznań, Poland.

Urban environments cover vast areas with a high density of humans and their dogs and cats causing problems for exploitation of new resources by wild animals. Such resources facilitate colonization by individuals with a high level of neophilia predicting that urban animals should show more neophilia than rural conspecifics. We provided bird-feeders across urban environments in 14 Polish cities and matched nearby rural habitats, testing whether the presence of a novel item (a brightly coloured green object made out of gum with a tuft of hair) differentially delayed arrival at feeders in rural compared to urban habitats. The presence of a novel object reduced the number of great tits Parus major, but also the total number of all species of birds although differentially so in urban compared to rural areas. That was the case independent of the potentially confounding effects of temperature, population density of birds, and the abundance of cats, dogs and pedestrians. The number of great tits and the total number of birds attending feeders increased in urban compared to rural areas independent of local population density of birds. This implies that urban birds have high levels of neophilia allowing them to readily exploit unpredictable resources in urban environments.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/srep28575DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4921825PMC
June 2016

Winter Bird Assemblages in Rural and Urban Environments: A National Survey.

PLoS One 2015 18;10(6):e0130299. Epub 2015 Jun 18.

Department of Vertebrate Anatomy and Zoology, University of Szczecin, Wąska 13, 71-412 Szczecin, Poland.

Urban development has a marked effect on the ecological and behavioural traits of many living organisms, including birds. In this paper, we analysed differences in the numbers of wintering birds between rural and urban areas in Poland. We also analysed species richness and abundance in relation to longitude, latitude, human population size, and landscape structure. All these parameters were analysed using modern statistical techniques incorporating species detectability. We counted birds in 156 squares (0.25 km2 each) in December 2012 and again in January 2013 in locations in and around 26 urban areas across Poland (in each urban area we surveyed 3 squares and 3 squares in nearby rural areas). The influence of twelve potential environmental variables on species abundance and richness was assessed with Generalized Linear Mixed Models, Principal Components and Detrended Correspondence Analyses. Totals of 72 bird species and 89,710 individual birds were recorded in this study. On average (± SE) 13.3 ± 0.3 species and 288 ± 14 individuals were recorded in each square in each survey. A formal comparison of rural and urban areas revealed that 27 species had a significant preference; 17 to rural areas and 10 to urban areas. Moreover, overall abundance in urban areas was more than double that of rural areas. There was almost a complete separation of rural and urban bird communities. Significantly more birds and more bird species were recorded in January compared to December. We conclude that differences between rural and urban areas in terms of winter conditions and the availability of resources are reflected in different bird communities in the two environments.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0130299PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4472663PMC
April 2016

Urban and rural habitats differ in number and type of bird feeders and in bird species consuming supplementary food.

Environ Sci Pollut Res Int 2015 Oct 24;22(19):15097-103. Epub 2015 May 24.

Department of Vertebrate Anatomy and Zoology, University of Szczecin, Wąska 13, 71-412, Szczecin, Poland.

Bird feeding is one of the most widespread direct interactions between man and nature, and this has important social and environmental consequences. However, this activity can differ between rural and urban habitats, due to inter alia habitat structure, human behaviour and the composition of wintering bird communities. We counted birds in 156 squares (0.25 km(2) each) in December 2012 and again in January 2013 in locations in and around 26 towns and cities across Poland (in each urban area, we surveyed 3 squares and also 3 squares in nearby rural areas). At each count, we noted the number of bird feeders, the number of bird feeders with food, the type of feeders, additional food supplies potentially available for birds (bread offered by people, bins) and finally the birds themselves. In winter, urban and rural areas differ in the availability of food offered intentionally and unintentionally to birds by humans. Both types of food availability are higher in urban areas. Our findings suggest that different types of bird feeder support only those species specialized for that particular food type and this relationship is similar in urban and rural areas.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11356-015-4723-0DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4592493PMC
October 2015

Urbanization level and woodland size are major drivers of woodpecker species richness and abundance.

PLoS One 2014 16;9(4):e94218. Epub 2014 Apr 16.

Institute of Zoology, Poznań University of Life Sciences, Poznań, Poland.

Urbanization is a process globally responsible for loss of biodiversity and for biological homogenization. Urbanization may have a direct negative impact on species behaviour and indirect effects on species populations through alterations of their habitats, for example patch size and habitat quality. Woodpeckers are species potentially susceptible to urbanization. These birds are mostly forest specialists and the development of urban areas in former forests may be an important factor influencing their richness and abundance, but documented examples are rare. In this study we investigated how woodpeckers responded to changes in forest habitats as a consequence of urbanization, namely size and isolation of habitat patches, and other within-patch characteristics. We selected 42 woodland patches in a gradient from a semi-natural rural landscape to the city centre of Poznań (Western Poland) in spring 2010. Both species richness and abundance of woodpeckers correlated positively to woodland patch area and negatively to increasing urbanization. Abundance of woodpeckers was also positively correlated with shrub cover and percentage of deciduous tree species. Furthermore, species richness and abundance of woodpeckers were highest at moderate values of canopy openness. Ordination analyses confirmed that urbanization level and woodland patch area were variables contributing most to species abundance in the woodpecker community. Similar results were obtained in presence-absence models for particular species. Thus, to sustain woodpecker species within cities it is important to keep woodland patches large, multi-layered and rich in deciduous tree species.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0094218PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3989232PMC
January 2015

Isozyme polymorphism and genetic structure of the population of Sorbus torminalis (L.) Crantz from the Bytyń Forest (Poland).

J Appl Genet 2004 ;45(3):321-4

Department of Botany, August Cieszkowski Agricultural University, Wojska Polskiego 71c, 60-625 Poznań, Poland.

Dormant buds collected from 35 wild service trees (Sorbus torminalis) in the Bytyń Forest were tested with horizontal gel electrophoresis to assess the genetic structure of the population. Among 16 investigated isozyme loci, seven loci (ADH-A, 6PGD-A, GDH-B, ME-A, SOD-A, PGM-A, PGM-B) proved to be polymorphic, whereas the other nine loci (SDH-A, SDH-B, DIA-C, DIA-D, FLE-A, FLE-B, GOT-B, IDH-A, IDH-B) were monomorphic. The number of alleles per polymorphic locus ranged from two to three, with a mean of 2.29. The average observed and expected heterozygosities were 0.2665 and 0.3462, respectively. The combined FIS value over all polymorphic loci was 0.2179, which reflects a substantial deficit of heterozygotes. Two polymorphic loci (SOD-A, PGM-A) were identified in S. torminalis for the first time.
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December 2004