Portal to the Lesser White-fronted Goose

- by the Fennoscandian Lesser White-fronted Goose project

Literature type: Scientific

Journal: Journal of Ornithology

Volume: 155 , Pages: 707-712.

DOI: 10.1007/s10336-014-1056-6

Language: English

Full reference: Wang, X, Fox, A.D., Zhuang, X., Cao, L., Meng, F. & Cong, P. 2014. Shifting to an energy-poor diet for nitrogen? Not the case for wintering herbivorous Lesser White-fronted Geese in China Journal of Ornithology 155: 707-712. https://www.dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10336-014-1056-6

Keywords: East Dongting Lake, Energy budget, foraging decisions, Nitrogen budget, Recessional grasslands, Uric acid


Geese often forage on mid-winter foods that fail to satisfy daily energy needs, but they may do so to acquire other nutrients, such as nitrogen. We tested thishypothesis by evaluating nitrogen budgets, namely thebalance of nitrogen income against expenditure, of winteringLesser White-fronted Geese Anser erythropus feedingat two sites within East Dongting Lake, China, where they could and could not balance daily energy budgets.Geese could balance nitrogen budgets in energy-rich habitats but were less able to do so in habitats where they failed to balance energy budgets. This study presents the first full nitrogen budget for a wintering goose species, and suggests that, rather than acting as a source of nitrogen, use of energy-poor but undisturbed habitats may represent a refuge from human disturbance at other habitats.

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