Land use changes in Russia and their impact on migrating geese

Grishchenko, Mikhail


Since the break-up of the USSR in 1991 agriculture in European Russia has been going through sweeping reorganization that resulted in fundamental changes of land use practices. This transformation led a widespread land abandonment which resulted in old-field development on fields formerly used for grain production. These processes take place near stopover sites that are used by migrating greater white-fronted geese. This species uses a vast network of stopover sites across European Russia to rest and to forage on their way from Western Europe to the Russian Arctic and back. With old-field development near stopover sites in European Russia an ever increasing number of them should become unsuitable for migrating geese. This change might potentially reshape the migratory network of greater white-fronted goose across European Russia pushing the species to explore alternative migration routes.