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Day-night habitat use by Double-banded Plovers Charadrius bicinctus in the Richmond River estuary, northern New South Wales


Night and day habitat use by Double-banded Plovers Charadrius bicinctus was studied in the Richmond River estuary, northern New South Wales. Habitat use was documented through direct observation of birds at two intertidal sandflats and by radio-tracking four birds. Comparison of Plover density between day and night failed to record a significant difference. However, radio-telemetry identified substantial differences in habitat use between the two time periods for two birds. At night some Double-banded Plovers responded to the improved visual conditions provided by artificial lights from urban areas by moving to mudflats that received high amounts of artificial light. During the full moon phase, Plovers were recorded at a greater number of sites, including sites that received no artificial light.

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