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OOSTERHUIS R (2020) Breeding success of House Sparrows Passer domesticus in different habitats. LIMOSA 93 (4): 165-172.

The breeding success of two populations of House Sparrows in the north of the Netherlands was studied in 2015-2019 by monitoring colour-ringed individuals and their young. The population in Leek was breeding in a suburban area and the population in Terheijl in a rural area. By using camera's and field observations, I determined the occurrence of successful fledging and the number of fledgelings of colourringed individuals who brought their young to two feeding locations in Leek and one feeding location in Terheijl (Tab. 3 and 4). House Sparrow parents continue feeding their young 10-14 days after fledging, and it seems that both parents each take care of part of their brood. During the five-year study period, the first fledgeling was observed on April 14 and the last new fledgeling on August 19 (Tab. 2). The colour-ringed individuals in the rural study site Terheijl had more successful broods per season (1.51) than the population in the suburban site Leek (1.25). Fifteen birds, five in Leek and 10 in Terheijl, had three successful broods in one season. The majority (13 out of 15) of these birds were at least two years old and had thus already participated in a breeding season before. The number of fledged young per parent was also significantly higher in Terheijl (on average 1.81 young) than in Leek (on average 1.27 young). Based on these results, it was estimated that House Sparrows in Terheijl annually produce 5.5 fledged young per pair, while House Sparrows in Leek annually produce 3.2 fledged young per pair. A likely explanation for this difference is a difference in food availability for young. House Sparrows would need a variety of insects throughout the whole breeding season to be able to raise several broods. It is possible that the quantity or quality of insects is higher in Terheijl (rural) than in Leek (suburban). Terheijl consists of an organic fruit tree plantation that is located in a small-scale agricultural landscape, with many native plants (> 75%). Leek consists mainly of houses and gardens, with many exotic plants (> 50%).

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limosa 93.4 2020
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