Revista de Biología Tropical ISSN Impreso: 0034-7744 ISSN electrónico: 2215-2075

Changes in nesting sites abundance and their use by woodpeckers along an urban gradient: a ten-year comparison


Costa Rica; Golfito; Melanerpes chrysauchen; Melanerpes rubricapillus; nests; snags.
Costa Rica; Golfito; Melanerpes chrysauchen; Melanerpes rubricapillus; nidos; tocones.

How to Cite

Protti-Sánchez, F., & Sandoval, L. (2019). Changes in nesting sites abundance and their use by woodpeckers along an urban gradient: a ten-year comparison. Revista De Biología Tropical, 67(S2), S274-S281.


Woodpeckers nesting substrate abundance may be reduced by urban expansion, negatively affecting their reproduction. Long-term studies in the tropics are rare but valuable to estimate how urban development has affected ecological communities. We present a ten-year comparison on nesting substrate abundance and their use by Melanerpes rubricapillus and M. chrysauchen woodpeckers along an urban gradient in Golfito, Costa Rica; which include three habitats and three substrates (snags, palms, and posts). Conditions remained unchanged in non-urban areas. In semi-urban areas, snag, posts, and nests on them, have decreased. In urban areas, despite snags and posts remaining constant, their use also decreased. In semi-urban and urban areas, palms and palm nests increased. This long term comparison indicates that woodpeckers took advantage of the increased presence of ornamental palms in gardens.


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