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Article << Previous     |     Next >>   Contents Vol 100(3)

A Preliminary Survey of Landbirds on Lakeba, Lau Group, Fiji

David W. Steadman and Janet Franklin

Emu 100(3) 227 - 235
Published: 2000


We report the results of 42 point-counts of land-birds in five types of habitat on Lakeba, Lau Group, Fiji, during 9–15 May 1999. The relative abundance and species richness were greatest in mid-/late-successional limestone forest, the habitat type least modified by humans. This was due mainly to an increased presence of four columbids (Gallicolumba stairi, Ptilinopus perousii, P. porphyraceus and Ducula pacifica) and two passerine insectivores (Mayrornis lessoni and Myiagra vanikorensis). By contrast, the relative abundance of two passerine nectarivores (Myzomela jugularis and Foulehaio carunculata) was greatest in disturbed habitats with many coconut trees. Most species of landbirds on Lakeba also occur in Tonga and/or Samoa, where methodologically similar surveys have taken place. The combined data indicate that the relative abundance and habitat association of some widespread West Polynesian species, such as Lalage maculosa, Aplonis tabuensis andFoulehaio carunculata, vary dramatically from island to island, both between and within island groups. Other species, such as Ducula pacifica, Ptilinopus porphyraceus and Halcyon chloris, occur across West Polynesia in much more predictable patterns.

Full text doi:10.1071/MU9934

© Royal Australian Ornithologists Union 2000

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