Número 18 | December 2008

Study and monitoring of finches in the Region of Murcia

Finches have a powerful call and a pleasant singing due to their short and strong conical beak and to the high development of their tongue and mouth muscles. This ability has led human beings, for decades, to pursue these wild species with the aim of catching and breed them in captivity, also known as bird breeding. In the Region of Murcia, there is only a considerable enthusiasm for the capture of goldfinches and linnets.
Currently, authorizations for the practice of this activity are issued by the Autonomous Communities, establishing, also, a maximum catch quota among all bird enthusiasts to ensure the maintenance of the species.
For the effective regulation of this activity is necessary to monitor compliance to the rules with regards to closed seasons, allowed areas or authorized techniques, as well as the number of catches allowed to every bird breeder and establish quotas for catching which are bearable for the populations.
In order to have information on these parameters, some field studies were done in 2007 aimed at ascertaining the current status and evolution of goldfinches, linnets, European serins and Greenfinches in the Region of Murcia. Efficient regulation of the provisions and rules of bird breeding activity, as well as the census and monitoring of these birds are essential tools to ensure their conservation in the medium and long term.
The objectives pursued by the study conducted in 2007 are: to determine the generic population parameters, to establish a network of sampling units for annual control and design a methodology for effective monitoring, to develope recommendations to regulate the legal catch and to further expand the knowledge of those areas important to the maintenance of the new chicks.
Jilguero (Carduelis carduelis)
Verdecillo (Serinus serinus). Foto de Jesús Valverde
Verderón (Carduelis chloris). Foto de Mario Suárez
Frutales de Cehegín. Foto de Byocima