In a recent opinion piece published in Biology Letters, School of Environment and Natural Resources faculty member Christopher Tonra and collaborating scientists from the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center call for “a full annual cycle perspective” to better understand the ecology and evolution of vertebrates. In the article, the scientists demonstrate there is a predominant focus on the breeding season in animal ecology research and this bias has limited the understanding of species biology. This perspective, along with technological advancements in monitoring and assessment across the full annual cycle and over larger spatial scales, the authors argue will help scientists and conservation biologists to reverse the alarming declines of many vertebrate populations.
To learn more about how the periods of the annual cycle are inextricably linked and to obtain a copy of this article visit: http://m.rsbl.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/11/8/20150552?hootPostID=40c1ca602bef63c591ff283446aa243f
Artwork depicts the annual cycle for American Redstart (Setophaga ruticilla).
Artwork by Lauren diBiccari.