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Revista Brasileira de Ornitologia, 22(1), 22-26 ARTICLE March 2014 Artiﬁcial incubation and introduction of a Collared Forest-Falcon Micrastur semitorquatus chick into a natural nest in Southern Pantanal, Brazil 1,2,5 2,3 2,4 Karlla V. C. Barbosa ,Thiago Filadelfo , and Neiva M. R. Guedes Rua Dr. Saul de Camargo Neves, 163, CEP 03755-100, São Paulo, SP, Brazil. Hyacinth Macaw Project, Instituto Arara Azul. Rua Klaus Sthurk, 178, Jardim Mansur, CEP 79051‒660, Campo Grande, MS, Brazil. Universidade de Brasília, Campus Universitário Darcy Ribeiro, CEP 70910‒900, Brasília, DF, Brazil. Universidade Anhanguera Uniderp, Post‒Graduation Program in Environment and Regional Development. Rua Ceará, 333, Miguel Couto, CEP 79003-310, Campo Grande, MS, Brazil. Corresponding author: email@example.com Received on 4 July 2013. Accepted on 22 December 2013. ABSTRACT: The Collared Forest-Falcon Micrastur semitorquatus is a widespread, relatively common species occurring throughout most of Brazil. Very few data exist on its breeding biology, but it is known to nest mainly in natural cavities of large trees, usually made by other bird species. In this study we report a case of a Collared Forest-Falcon that hatched in an artiﬁcial incubator and was introduced into a natural nest previously known with three chicks of same species and similar age. The introduced chick was successfully accepted and fed by the adult parents for more than 15 days, until our last visit to the nest. Although the study case presented here required the existence of an active nest of the same species for an introduction of the chick, it was an alternative, low- cost way to ensure the success of the nestling and avoid the probability of imprinting during the time expended rearing the chicks in situ. KEYWORDS: behavior, Falconidae, management, nestling and reproduction. INTRODUCTION eggs, between March and April in Guatemala (Thorstrom et al. 1990; Thorstrom et al. 2000; Thorstrom et al. 2001) The Collared Forest‒Falcon Micrastur semitorquatus and between September and November in Brazil (Guedes is the largest of the seven currently known species of 1993; Carvalho-Filho et al. 1998; Ferguson-Lees & Christie 2001; Carrara et al. 2007; Vallejos et al. 2008). the genus (White et al. 1994; Ferguson-Lees & Christie 2001; Whittaker 2002). It ranges from Mexico through In the Pantanal region, the Collared Forest‒Falcon is a Central and South America, inhabiting lowland tropical potential competitor for natural cavities with Hyacinth rainforest, as well as semi‒deciduous and second‒growth Macaw Anodorhynchus hyacinthinus, Laughing Falcon forests (White et al. 1994). Very few studies exist on its Herpetotheres cachinnans, and other species (Guedes 1993; Guedes 2011; Barbosa et al. in press). natural history (Thorstrom et al. 1990; Thorstrom et al. 2000), and concerning its reproductive behavior the The diet of Micrastur semitorquatus is known to be scarce accounts in the literature are mostly from Central composed mainly of small vertebrates, such as mammals, America (White et al. 1994; Thorstrom et al. 2001). birds, and lizards (White et al. 1994; Ferguson-Lees & The ﬁrst published information on a forest‒falcon Christie 2001; Carrara et al. 2007). In the Brazilian Pantanal, the crew of the Hyacinth Macaw Project have nest date is from the early 1970’s (White et al. 1994). Species of the genus Micrastur are often monogamous, worked for the past 20 years monitoring Anodorhynchus known to nest in pairs and to occupy natural tree cavities hyacinthinus’ nests and have made occasional observations for breeding (Sick 1997), although there are a few reports of adults Collared Forest-Falcons feeding their chicks of the species nesting in abandoned human habitations with birds and lizards, whose bones and feathers were left inside the nests (Guedes 1993, 2011). During our (Carvalho-Filho et al. 1998) and natural caves (Vallejos et al. 2008). Concerning M. semitorquatus, it nests in natural study, adults M. semitorquatus were observed with lizards cavities of large mature trees, where it lays one to three such as Giant Ameiva Ameiva ameiva and Gold Tegu Artiﬁcial incubation and introduction of a Collared Forest-Falcon Micrastur semitorquatus chick into a natural nest in Southern Pantanal, Brazil Karlla V. C. Barbosa,Thiago Filadelfo, and Neiva M. R. Guedes Tupinambis teguixin, as well as an unidentiﬁed nightjar that the parents left it unattended and abandoned for (Caprimulgidae) and many bodies of prey with distinct unknown reasons. Thus, on 6 October 2007, we collected feathers, some clearly identiﬁed as Plush-crested Jay the egg and transported it to the laboratory for artiﬁcial Cyanocorax chrysops, Smooth -billed Ani Crotophaga ani, incubation. and Guira Cuckoo Guira guira. The M. semitorquatus nest was in a Manduvi Tree Here we report the introduction of a chick hatched in Sterculia apetala, with an entrance roughly 4.5 m from an artiﬁcial incubator into a natural cavity nest occupied the ground. The color of the egg laid was red‒brown, by three Micrastur semitorquatus chicks. We also present with darker spots, corroborating the observations of other information about eggs, newborn chicks, and their diet authors (Thorstrom et al. 1990; Guedes 1993; Carrara et both in the lab and ﬁeld. al. 2007; Vallejos et al. 2008), measuring 5.69 x 2.37 cm, and weighing 60 g. The egg was maintained in a Premium Ecológica IP120 incubator with mean temperature METHODS AND RESULTS of 37.2ºC and turned 180° each 12 h (according to Burnham 1983, with modiﬁcations). On 9 October The study was carried out at Refúgio Ecológico the egg started to hatch, and on 13 October the chick Caiman (19º51'‒19º58'S, 56º17'‒56º24'W), in the emerged from the egg, after spending almost 24 hours to Pantanal of Miranda, Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil, under conclude the process. On hatching day, the chick weighed the auspices of the Hyacinth Macaw Project. On 6 40 grams and its measurements were as follows: 105 mm September 2007, we recorded an egg of M. semitorquatus total length, 20 mm tarsus length, 215 mm wing length, in a natural cavity (Figure 1), previously occupied by an 346 mm head length, and 153 mm bill length (exposed A. hyacinthinus. We returned to the nest on 3 October culmen). The chick hatched with closed eyes, although and after three days monitoring the nest, we attested they started to open ﬁve hours later. FIGURE 1: Micrastur semitorquatus egg laid in a Manduvi Tree Sterculia apetala cavity in Miranda, Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil. Revista Brasileira de Ornitologia, 22(1), 2014 Artiﬁcial incubation and introduction of a Collared Forest-Falcon Micrastur semitorquatus chick into a natural nest in Southern Pantanal, Brazil Karlla V. C. Barbosa,Thiago Filadelfo, and Neiva M. R. Guedes The nestling was fed from the second day on, four chicks appeared healthy (Figure 2a). The following day, times a day, with the ﬁrst feeding at 7 am and the last at one parent was observed inside the nest and all the four 7 pm. The food oﬀered was based on chicken and beef, chicks had full crops, including the recently introduced with some eggshell powder for calcium supplementation, chick. On 30 October, almost two weeks later, one parent following the foreknown diet most used in captive was nearby defending the nest site and all four young still Falconiformes and according to the food availability at appeared healthy (Figure 2b). the moment. The meat was cut in small pieces 1x1 cm Our last visit to the nest site was on 10 December, and provided freely according to the chick’s acceptance. when the Collared Forest-Falcons were no longer present The chick was weighed before feeding (Table 1). On 16 and the nest was occupied by a Muscovy Duck Cairina October 2007, three days old and weighing roughly 50 moschata. The successful acceptance of the introduced grams, the chick was transferred to a known active nest chick and the continued parental care of all nestlings of Micrastur semitorquatus with chicks of similar size and conﬁrms the eﬀectiveness of the management strategy age. During the following visit to the nest, two days after applied. the introduction, the parents were absent but the four A B FIGURE 2: A) Micrastur semitorquatus chicks on the day of introduction. B) Micrastur semitorquatus juveniles two weeks after the introduction. TABLE 1: Description of the time and food item oﬀered for the chick of Collared Forest‒Falcon (Micrastur semitorquatus) hatched in an artiﬁcial incubator. Date Time Chick weight (g) Food type Food (g) 14/out 07:30 38 Chicken 3 14/out 10:38 40 Chicken 1 14/out 14:20 40 Chicken 2 14/out 18:40 41 Chicken 3 15/out 06:30 40 Chicken 5 15/out 10:30 44 Chicken 4 15/out 12:50 48 Ground beef 3 15/out 17:10 50 Ground beef 6 16/out 05:45 51 Ground beef 6 Revista Brasileira de Ornitologia, 22(1), 2014 Artiﬁcial incubation and introduction of a Collared Forest-Falcon Micrastur semitorquatus chick into a natural nest in Southern Pantanal, Brazil Karlla V. C. Barbosa,Thiago Filadelfo, and Neiva M. R. Guedes DISCUSSION 2012). Although, some smaller-scale, lower-cost cases have been eﬀective, like the successful translocation of The egg transported to the lab for incubation was an Ornate Hawk-Eagle Spizaetus ornatus nest with its observed for a period of 37 days from our ﬁrst observation nestling after the ﬂooding of the nesting site (Joenck et al. of the nest in the wild until the chick emerged from the 2013). While not currently listed as a threatened species, this case of the Collared Forest-Falcon ﬁts as an excellent egg, a period longer than observed in Brazil by Guedes model for the development of more elaborate protocols (1993) and in Ecuador by López-Lanús (2000), which was 30 and 27 days, respectively. However, the incubation for the rehabilitation of raptor chicks rescued without a period in Guatemala was even longer, lasting from 46 to 48 natural parental care option. days (White et al. 1994; Thorstrom et al. 2000). Another diﬀerence observed between the artiﬁcial incubated egg ACKNOWLEDGMENTS and a natural one was the time expended for the nestling to open its eyes, which occurred ﬁve hours after hatching We thank the team, partners, and sponsors of the and has been observed to last roughly three days in the Hyacinth Macaw Project: Universidade Anhanguera wild (Thorstrom 2001). Uniderp, Fundação Toyota do Brasil, Refúgio Ecológico M. semitorquatus is known to lay one to two eggs Caiman, Bradesco Capitalização, Parrots International, per clutch (Guedes 1993; Carrara et al. 2007). However, and BR Tintas. We are also very grateful to our friend in this study we recorded a natural nest with three chicks. Juliana Rechetelo and Christopher M. Milensky (bird Unfortunately we were not able to make more frequent collection manager of the Smithsonian Institution) for monitoring trips to the nest with the four chicks, but the their valuable comments that improved an early draft of absence of the almost two-month-old ﬂedglings indicates the manuscript. that the young likely left the nest naturally. Even though the nesting success could not be estimated (see protocol in Mayﬁeld 1961), the evident acceptance of the introduced REFERENCES chick indicates the eﬀectiveness of the method employed. The Pantanal is under constant pressure of Barbosa, K. V. 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Ornithology Research – Springer Journals
Published: Mar 1, 2014
Keywords: behavior; Falconidae; management; nestling and reproduction
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