Birds

N deposition :: Dotterel

Impact Type: Deposition of pollutant

Key Concerns:

Current work suggests that N deposition leads to habitat change, with a loss of Racomitrium heath (Milne & Hartley 2001). This impacts on the birds through loss of nesting sites and reduction in insect prey (sawfly larvae) for the chicks (van de Wal pers comm.).

Additional Comments:

The move from moss dominated heath to grasses also increases trampling by sheep, so increasing the risk of destruction of nests and eggs. 

N deposition :: Capercaillie

Impact Type: Deposition of pollutant

Key Concerns:

Increases in nitrogen deposition to Scots pine forest may be beneficial to adult capercaillie, as there are potential changes to nutrient value of the pine needles which the adult birds feed on in winter (Spidsx & Korsmo 1993).

Additional Comments:

Acid deposition :: Dotterel

Impact Type: Deposition of pollutant

Key Concerns:

Recent changes in the breeding distribution of Dotterel in Britain may be related to deterioration in feeding and breeding habitat due to overgrazing by sheep and possibly acidification (Galbraith et al. 1993). The effect of acid rain thinning the egg shells is not substantiated by field evidence (Pyatt et al. 1998), but there is no field research to support this. The quantitative scale of effects in Britain is therefore highly uncertain.

Additional Comments:

Acid deposition :: Dipper

Impact Type: Deposition of pollutant

Key Concerns:

Acidification affects birds primarily through their trophic dependence on prey. The dipper is largely dependent for its food on aquatic species such as mayfly, caddis larvae and fish which it finds in small, relatively fast flowing rivers. In habitats where Dipper territory coincides with freshwater acidification, there is a potential for adverse effects (Ormerod et al 1986, Ormerod 1991, Reynolds and Ormerod, 1991). These include:

Acid deposition :: Blue Tit

Impact Type: Deposition of pollutant

Key Concerns:

It has been demonstrated that anthropogenic acid deposition can significantly reduce levels of available calcium in soil and the abundance of calcareous items such as snail shells. Recent research in areas adversely affected by acid deposition in continental Europe has suggested that reduced calcium availability has resulted in an increased incidence of eggshell defects in small birds (Pyatt et al. 1998, Weimer & Schmidt 1998).

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