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Birds

Seagull Photo: Daniël Houben
Seagull (photo: Daniël Houben)

Busy, busy, busy. Spring has finally reached us, so it’s time for action. Birds are bustling with activity everywhere: they are building nests, finding food, raising their young. In April, we will guide you through the wondrous world of the black-tailed godwit, blackbird and sedge warbler. See our researchers at work in the Arctic, the Wadden region, on the Seychelles and... simply in their own backyards.

Video's

Martijn Hammers
Martijn Hammers

Interviews and news reports

Getting help with the kids slows down ageing in female birds

Seychelles warblers live and breed in family groups. In each group, a dominant female and male reproduce. When helpers assist the female with incubation and feeding of chicks, the dominant female breeders age more slowly and live longer.

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Jeroen Onrust (Photo: Lars Soerink)
Jeroen Onrust (photo: Lars Soerink)

Manure injection detrimental to meadow birds

On farmland where liquid manure is injected into the soil, the amount of earthworms is lower than on tracts of land where rough farmyard manure is used. The cutting open of the grass surface during injection causes the top soil to dry out to such an extent that worms are no longer found at the surface. In farmland areas where this method is applied, meadow birds feeding on worms find this source of nutrition considerably diminished.

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Jelmer Samplonius
Jelmer Samplonius

Climate change intensifies war of the birds

University of Groningen biologists have discovered that climate change has an effect on the regular clashes between great tits and pied flycatchers during the breeding season. In some years, great tits killed 10% of the male pied flycatchers.

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Nathan Senner
Nathan Senner

Godwits are real high-fliers

The Dutch national bird, the black-tailed godwit, spends more than 20% of its migration flying time at very high altitudes en route to its West African wintering grounds. Altitudes of at least five kilometres and sometimes nearly six are not unknown. This is amazing because godwits are true lowland birds.

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Prof.dr. Simon Verhulst & dr. Juan Diego Ibáñez Álamo
Prof.dr. Simon Verhulst & dr. Juan Diego Ibáñez Álamo

Blackbirds in the city: Bad health, longer life

Blackbirds live longer in cities than in forests. But their telomeres, the repetitive stretches of DNA at the ends of the chromosomes, show that these city birds have a much poorer health status than their rural cousins.

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Researchers in the spotlights

Dr. Maarten Loonen Polar research, Arctic ecology
Prof. Theunis Piersma Migratory birds, godwits, animal ecology
Prof. Charlotte Hemelrijk Behavioural biology, self-organization in primates, birds, fish
Dr. Eize Stamhuis Biological fluid mechanics and locomotion of marine, aquatic and aerial organisms

Birds and Dutchmen

The amount of citizens, related to one bird. Created by our Geodienst. The UG Geodienst is creating various maps on the basis of available geographic sources.

Amount of citizens, related to one bird
Amount of citizens, related to one bird
Last modified:06 May 2019 12.31 p.m.
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