Zoological Research Museum Alexander Koenig

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Nutcracker adaptation

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Project title: 
Geographical differentiation and adaptation of the Eurasian Nutracker (Nucifraga caryocatactes)
ZFMK Project lead: 
Object of research: 
Birds

Description

The Eurasian Nutcracker Nucifraga caryocatactes s.l. is widely distributed across northern Europe and Asia. Its diet mainly consists of nuts and seeds of different conifer species and deciduous trees. Currently eight to nine subspecies are distinguished based on differences in bill morphology and plumage characteristics. Variation in the birds’ diet and varying cone morphology of food plants might account for these differences, especially in bill morphology. In cooperation with the Senckenberg Biodiversity and Climate Research Centre (BiK-F), we therefore investigate the different nutcracker subspecies and compare them with dietary characteristics and further ecological traits using classical morphometric measurements and digital three-dimensional methods.

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M.Sc. candidate
+49 228 9122-239
+49 228 9122-212
a [dot] scherges [at] leibniz-zfmk [dot] de