131 research outputs found

    When is enough...enough? Effective sampling protocols for estimating the survival rates of seabirds with mark-recapture techniques

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    Capsule: Lower intensity mark-recapture studies, such as those undertaken by citizen scientists, provide an opportunity to improve the spatial representation of survival estimates for birds. Colonial nesting birds are particularly suited to this because, for many species, large numbers of breeding birds and chicks can be located relatively easily. The minimum level of recapture effort required to accurately estimate true survival rates and detect temporal variation largely depended on the respective ringing effort. Therefore, mark-recapture studies should consider both aspects of the field study when setting or adjusting minimum effort guidelines. Furthermore, achieving reliable estimation with short time-series required more intensive survey designs, highlighting the importance of longevity when planning these studies. Aims: To provide minimum guidelines of field effort that can be used to manage smaller projects that monitor survival rates, such as those reliant on citizen scientists. Methods: We conducted a sensitivity analysis that evaluated the statistical power associated with using different mark-recapture survey designs to estimate a fixed ‘true’ survival rate and detect sources of temporal variation and individual heterogeneity within the population. Results: Isolating temporal variation with a good degree (90%) of certainty required the highest levels of survey effort. Based on the assessed survey designs, we recommend studies that have a ten-year trajectory and a recapture rate of 0.6, aim to mark at least 200 new adults per year. The recommended number of marked individuals will decrease if it is possible to achieve higher rates of recapture. Lower rates of juvenile survival and delayed reproduction mean that seabird mark-recapture survey designs that target both chicks and adults offer only marginal improvements in resolving the survival rates of adults, when compared to designs targeting adults only. However, collecting juvenile mark-recapture data provide access to age-specific vital rates that are also valuable for assessing the population dynamics of seabirds. Conclusion: The addition of chicks is unlikely to improve the resolution of adult survival rates markedly, although for species with low natal dispersal and earlier ages of maturity, these data may allow the estimation of other vital rates, such as juvenile survival rates and age of maturity. Implementing minimum effort guidelines potentially enables the effective management of smaller mark-recapture studies, thus minimising the risk that studies fail to achieve the data conditions necessary for robust estimation of survival rates

    A detailed view of the gas shell around R Sculptoris with ALMA

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    Context. During the asymptotic giant branch (AGB) phase, stars undergo thermal pulses - short-lived phases of explosive helium burning in a shell around the stellar core. Thermal pulses lead to the formation and mixing-up of new elements to the stellar surface. They are hence fundamental to the chemical evolution of the star and its circumstellar envelope. A further consequence of thermal pulses is the formation of detached shells of gas and dust around the star, several of which have been observed around carbon-rich AGB stars. Aims. We aim to determine the physical properties of the detached gas shell around R Sculptoris, in particular the shell mass and temperature, and to constrain the evolution of the mass-loss rate during and after a thermal pulse. Methods. We analyse 12CO(1-0), 12CO(2-1), and 12CO(3-2) emission, observed with the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) during Cycle 0 and complemented by single-dish observations. The spatial resolution of the ALMA data allows us to separate the detached shell emission from the extended emission inside the shell. We perform radiative transfer modelling of both components to determine the shell properties and the post-pulse mass-loss properties. Results. The ALMA data show a gas shell with a radius of 19″.5 expanding at 14.3 km s-1. The different scales probed by the ALMA Cycle 0 array show that the shell must be entirely filled with gas, contrary to the idea of a detached shell. The comparison to single-dish spectra and radiative transfer modelling confirms this. We derive a shell mass of 4.5 × 10-3 M⊙ with a temperature of 50 K. Typical timescales for thermal pulses imply a pulse mass-loss rate of 2.3 × 10-5 M⊙ yr-1. For the post-pulse mass-loss rate, we find evidence for a gradual decline of the mass-loss rate, with an average value of 1.6 × 10-5 M⊙ yr-1. The total amount of mass lost since the last thermal pulse is 0.03 M⊙, a factor four higher compared to classical models, with a sharp decline in mass-loss rate immediately after the pulse. Conclusions. We find that the mass-loss rate after a thermal pulse has to decline more slowly than generally expected from models of thermal pulses. This may cause the star to lose significantly more mass during a thermal pulse cycle, which affects the lifetime on the AGB and the chemical evolution of the star, its circumstellar envelope, and the interstellar medium

    Circumstellar interaction in supernovae in dense environments - an observational perspective

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    In a supernova explosion, the ejecta interacting with the surrounding circumstellar medium (CSM) give rise to variety of radiation. Since CSM is created from the mass lost from the progenitor star, it carries footprints of the late time evolution of the star. This is one of the unique ways to get a handle on the nature of the progenitor star system. Here, I will focus mainly on the supernovae (SNe) exploding in dense environments, a.k.a. Type IIn SNe. Radio and X-ray emission from this class of SNe have revealed important modifications in their radiation properties, due to the presence of high density CSM. Forward shock dominance of the X-ray emission, internal free-free absorption of the radio emission, episodic or non-steady mass loss rate, asymmetry in the explosion seem to be common properties of this class of SNe.Comment: Fixed minor typos. 31 pages, 9 figures, accepted for publication in Space Science Reviews. Chapter in International Space Science Institute (ISSI) Book on "Supernovae" to be published in Space Science Reviews by Springe

    Feasibility study of large-scale deployment of colour-ringing on black-legged kittiwake populations to improve the realism of demographic models assessing the population impacts of offshore wind farms

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    • Renewable energy developments, including offshore wind farms have been identified as a key component in international efforts to mitigate climate change and its impact on biodiversity. This has led to an increasing number of offshore wind farms around the UK, however, these can have negative impacts on seabird populations. • Population Viability Analysis (PVA) is frequently used to quantify these potential negative effects on seabird populations and is a vital part of the consenting process. However, a lack of empirical data on many aspects of seabird demography means that there can be considerable uncertainty in these assessments. • Black-legged Kittiwake Rissa tridactyla populations are thought to be particularly sensitive to additional mortality caused by collision with offshore wind turbines and are often highlighted as a feature of Special Protection Areas (SPAs). Offshore wind farms, therefore, have been identified as potentially causing an adverse effect on site integrity at some SPAs. • Despite being a relatively well-studied species, there is still much uncertainty in our knowledge of Kittiwake demographic rates and meta-population dynamics, which impedes our ability to accurately assess the way populations might respond to additional wind farm-induced mortality. • The Offshore Wind Strategic Monitoring and Research Forum (OWSMRF) identified a large-scale colour-ringing programme of Kittiwake colonies across the UK as one potential approach for improving empirical estimates of Kittiwake demographic rates. • Therefore, the main aim of this project was to determine the extent to which colour-ringing can be used to obtain reliable baseline estimates of key demographic rates in Kittiwake populations to improve the realism of demographic models assessing the population impacts of offshore wind farms, and thereby reduce uncertainty around these predicted impacts

    The Relation Between the Surface Brightness and the Diameter for Galactic Supernova Remnants

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    In this work, we have constructed a relation between the surface brightness (Σ\Sigma) and diameter (D) of Galactic C- and S-type supernova remnants (SNRs). In order to calibrate the Σ\Sigma-D dependence, we have carefully examined some intrinsic (e.g. explosion energy) and extrinsic (e.g. density of the ambient medium) properties of the remnants and, taking into account also the distance values given in the literature, we have adopted distances for some of the SNRs which have relatively more reliable distance values. These calibrator SNRs are all C- and S-type SNRs, i.e. F-type SNRs (and S-type SNR Cas A which has an exceptionally high surface brightness) are excluded. The Sigma-D relation has 2 slopes with a turning point at D=36.5 pc: Σ\Sigma(at 1 GHz)=8.46.3+19.5^{+19.5}_{-6.3}×1012\times10^{-12} D5.990.33+0.38^{{-5.99}^{+0.38}_{-0.33}} Wm2^{-2}Hz1^{-1}ster1^{-1} (for Σ\Sigma3.7×1021\le3.7\times10^{-21} Wm2^{-2}Hz1^{-1}ster1^{-1} and D\ge36.5 pc) and Σ\Sigma(at 1 GHz)=2.71.4+2.1^{+2.1}_{-1.4}×\times 1017^{-17} D2.470.16+0.20^{{-2.47}^{+0.20}_{-0.16}} Wm2^{-2}Hz1^{-1}ster1^{-1} (for Σ\Sigma>3.7×1021>3.7\times10^{-21} Wm2^{-2}Hz1^{-1}ster1^{-1} and D<<36.5 pc). We discussed the theoretical basis for the Σ\Sigma-D dependence and particularly the reasons for the change in slope of the relation were stated. Added to this, we have shown the dependence between the radio luminosity and the diameter which seems to have a slope close to zero up to about D=36.5 pc. We have also adopted distance and diameter values for all of the observed Galactic SNRs by examining all the available distance values presented in the literature together with the distances found from our Σ\Sigma-D relation.Comment: 45 pages, 2 figures, accepted for publication in Astronomical and Astrophysical Transaction

    Synchronous timing of return to breeding sites in a long-distance migratory seabird with ocean-scale variation in migration schedules

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    Background Migratory birds generally have tightly scheduled annual cycles, in which delays can have carry-over effects on the timing of later events, ultimately impacting reproductive output. Whether temporal carry-over effects are more pronounced among migrations over larger distances, with tighter schedules, is a largely unexplored question. Methods We tracked individual Arctic Skuas Stercorarius parasiticus, a long-distance migratory seabird, from eight breeding populations between Greenland and Siberia using light-level geolocators. We tested whether migration schedules among breeding populations differ as a function of their use of seven widely divergent wintering areas across the Atlantic Ocean, Mediterranean Sea and Indian Ocean. Results Breeding at higher latitudes led not only to later reproduction and migration, but also faster spring migration and shorter time between return to the breeding area and clutch initiation. Wintering area was consistent within individuals among years; and more distant areas were associated with more time spent on migration and less time in the wintering areas. Skuas adjusted the period spent in the wintering area, regardless of migration distance, which buffered the variation in timing of autumn migration. Choice of wintering area had only minor effects on timing of return at the breeding area and timing of breeding and these effects were not consistent between breeding populations. Conclusion The lack of a consistent effect of wintering area on timing of return between breeding areas indicates that individuals synchronize their arrival with others in their population despite extensive individual differences in migration strategies