20-year changes in the distribution patterns of Italian breeding birds

Tellini Florenzano G., Campedelli T., Buvoli L., Londi G., Mini L.

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Due to the lack, in Italy, of old and continuous breeding bird monitoring schemes, it is very diffcult to identify, in a objective way, changes occurred in the population size and distribution of bird species. In this paper the authors present the results of the comparison between data gathered through the frst four years of MITO2000 project (2000-2003) and the Italian Breeding Bird Atlas (1983-86). The main problem has been, starting from two different sampling methodologies, to obtain comparable data. These strong differences make possible comparisons about changes in distribution patterns only. Starting from the 103 MITO2000 target species, a signifcant distribution change was found for seven species: in particular, four species showed a clear southward range contraction: Hoopoe, Wryneck, Woodchat Shrike, and Corn Bunting; two species have expanded southwards: Woodpigeon and Collared Dove; whereas the signifcant change in Linnet distribution seems less clear. These results agree well with known general European processes, like the biodiversity loss within farmland and the increase in woodland surface.