The research conducted by a team of 18 researchers from 13 European institutions, including Dr. Przemysław Kurek from our Institute, aimed to identify the network of relationships between a group of birds eating fleshy-fruits and plants in the context of transferring their seeds between different types of environments. The research was carried out on a massive scale: a total of 949 interactions between 46 bird species and 81 plant species were investigated. The researchers found that only about a third (35%) of the plants in the study sites were spread by birds migrating north in spring. On the other hand, the vast majority (86%) of plants are spread by birds migrating in autumn to warmer areas. Birds with the greatest potential for dispersal European plants to cooler latitudes are species wintering in central and southern Europe or in North Africa (north of the Sahara). They are: robins, blackcaps, blackbirds, song thrushes, fieldfares and mistle thrushes, which are generally very common and numerous on the European continent.


Short movie: