Gaia Dell'Ariccia

Gaia Dell'Ariccia
Auckland Council · Research and Evaluation Unit (RIMU)

PhD

About

34
Publications
5,375
Reads
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579
Citations
Additional affiliations
May 2019 - present
Auckland Council
Position
  • Researcher
October 2017 - December 2017
Phillip Island Nature Parks
Position
  • PostDoc Position
Description
  • Olfactory ecology of the Little penguin (Eudyptula minor)
October 2014 - September 2016
University of Barcelona
Position
  • PostDoc Position
Education
October 2005 - September 2009
University of Zurich
Field of study
  • Natural Sciences
October 1997 - April 2004
Sapienza University of Rome
Field of study
  • Biological Sciences

Publications

Publications (34)
Technical Report
Full-text available
The Te Moananui-ā-Toi / Tīkapa Moana / Hauraki Gulf is regarded as an international area of significance for many of New Zealand’s seabirds. This is due to the diversity and number of species that rely on the area to survive, including the endemic species that breed in the marine park and the wider region – the tākoketai / black petrel, tītī / Pycr...
Presentation
Procellariiform use the sense of smell to find food in the middle of the ocean, to orient and navigate. For these seabirds, olfaction has been evidenced as they key cue for homing at night in burrow-nesting species. Penguins are phylogenetically closely related to Procellariiforms but very little is known on their use of odours for foraging. In add...
Presentation
New Zealand is internationally recognized as the seabird capital of the world with approximately one quarter of all seabirds breeding here, of which 10% are endemic. Within New Zealand, the Auckland Region is a hotspot for seabird biodiversity. There are 25 seabird species known to breed in this region, of which 12 (50%) are New Zealand endemic spe...
Technical Report
Full-text available
The Noises are an island group of outstanding biodiversity and cultural value positioned on the outer edge of the inner Hauraki Gulf / Tīkapa Moana / Te Moananui-ā-toi. Whilst terrestrial habitats of The Noises have been protected for decades, declines in the marine environment have brought together The Noises Trust, iwi, scientists and the wider c...
Presentation
Full-text available
Islands are biodiversity hotspots but are highly sensitive to disturbances, including the introduction of predatory mammals. While there have been considerable advances to the technology used to remove invasive mammals, little is known about the changes island communities experience during recovery. New Zealand – the world's largest seabird biodive...
Article
To increase fitness, a wide range of vertebrates preferentially mate with partners that are dissimilar at the Major Histocompatibility Complex (MHC) or that have high MHC diversity. Although MHC often can be assessed through olfactory cues, the mechanism by which MHC genes influence odor is to a large extent unclear. MHC class IIB molecules, that e...
Article
Full-text available
Wind conditions strongly affect migratory costs and shape flyways and detours for many birds, especially soaring birds. However, whether winds also influence individual variability in migratory choices is an unexplored question. Cory's shearwaters (Calonectris borealis) exhibit migratory flexibility, changing non-breeding destination across the Atl...
Article
Full-text available
Shearwaters deprived of their olfactory sense before being displaced to distant sites have impaired homing ability but it is unknown what the role of olfaction is when birds navigate freely without their sense of smell. Furthermore, treatments used to induce anosmia and to disrupt magneto-reception in displacement experiments might influence non-sp...
Book
Full-text available
This book has been published by the Spanish Society of Ornithology (SEO/BirdLife) in the framework of the MIGRA programme. In this work we analyse the movement ecology and at-sea behaviour of two related seabird species under conservation concern: the Scopoli's and the Cory's Shearwater. It focuses on Spanish populations, covering the entire distri...
Article
Full-text available
In their recent paper, Savoca and collaborators (2016) showed that plastic debris in the ocean may acquire a dimethyl sulfide (DMS) signature from biofouling developing on their surface. According to them, DMS emission may represent an olfactory trap for foraging seabirds, which explains patterns of plastic ingestion among procellariiform seabirds....
Article
Full-text available
Reproductive isolation of avian species often extensively relies on mate choice. Several bird species have recently been shown to use chemical cues in mate choice, in addition to the well-studied visual and acoustic signals. The two former European subspecies of Cory’s shearwater have been recently afforded species status as Calonectris borealis an...
Article
Full-text available
Chemical signals may be the basis of interspecific recognition and speciation in many animals. To test whether a chemical label allowing recognition between closely related species exists in seabirds, we investigated two closely related taxa breeding sympatrically at some localities: Cory's and Scopoli's shearwaters. Procellariiform seabirds are id...
Article
Petrels are highly philopatric and return from migratory journeys of thousands of kilometres to breed in the same burrow year after year. During the breeding season, some burrowing petrel species rely on their sense of smell to locate their nest at night, but the mechanisms involved in the homing behaviour after several months at sea are virtually...
Article
Full-text available
Many procellariiforms use olfactory cues to locate food patches over the seemingly featureless ocean surface. In particular, some of them are able to detect and are attracted by dimethylsulfide (DMS), a volatile compound naturally occurring over worldwide oceans in correspondence with productive feeding areas. However, current knowledge is restrict...
Article
Full-text available
Homing pigeons (Columba livia) are believed to adopt a map-and-compass strategy to find their way home. Surprisingly, to date a clear demonstration of the use of a cognitive map in free-flight experiments is missing. In this study, we investigated whether homing pigeons use a mental map in which - at an unknown release site - their own position, th...
Article
Full-text available
Olfactory cues have been shown to be important to homing petrels at night, but apparently those procellariiform species that also come back to the colony during the day are not impaired by smell deprivation. However, the nycthemeral distribution of homing, i.e. whether displaced birds released at night return to their burrow by night or during dayl...
Article
Full-text available
The behaviour and ecology of seabirds such as albatrosses, petrels and shearwaters have been the subject of numerous studies, often employing the most recent technologies to track birds during their foraging trips. Until now, however, large oceanic species have been preferred for tracking studies because of the dimensions and weight of the devices...
Article
Full-text available
When performing homing experiments with individual releases, pigeons have to wait in a transport box for a certain amount of time before being released and hence perceive the departure of companions. Quite often, the last pigeons disappear straightforward from the release site. The question is whether this reflects improved orientation because of p...
Article
GPS analysis of flight trajectories of pigeons can reveal that topographic features influence their flight paths. Recording electrical brain activity that reflects attentional processing could indicate objects of interest that do not cause changes in the flight path. Therefore, we investigated whether crossing particular visual landmarks when homin...
Article
Full-text available
Flight experience is one of the factors that influences initial orientation of displaced homing pigeons (Columba livia). Prior studies showed a systematic dependence of initial orientation on previously flown direction. Using GPS data loggers, this study sought to examine the effect of previous directional training of 40 homing pigeons when they we...
Article
Full-text available
Die Heimkehrfähigkeit von Brieftauben widerspiegelt echte Navigation: sie bestimmen ihre Position und berechnen die Flugrichtung zum Heimschlag. Darüber hinaus dürften aber auch Verhaltensfaktoren die Heimkehrleistung beeinflussen. Ziel der Arbeit war das Erfassen der Rolle von Sozialverhalten, Erfahrung und Motivation auf den Heimflug mittels GPS-...
Article
The effects of aggregation in navigating animals have generated growing interest in field and theoretical studies. The few studies on the effects of group flying on the performance of homing pigeons (Columba livia) have led to controversial conclusions, chiefly because of the lack of appropriate technology to follow pigeons during their entire home...
Article
Full-text available
Flying is an energy demanding activity that imposes several physiological challenges on birds, such as increase in energy expenditure. Evidence from sports medicine shows that exhausting exercise may cause oxidative stress. Studies on avian flight have so far considered several blood parameters, such as uric acid, corticosteroids, or circulating fr...

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Projects

Projects (2)
Project
Since 1993 we conduct a monitoring program of storm petrels (Hydrobates pelagicus) in two neighbouring colonies at Benidorm Island (Spain). We mainly study demography (survival, recruitment, laying dates, breeding succes), but aslo behaviour, serology, etc. One of the main goals of this project is the conservation of this vulnerable species. Nest boxes were provided in 1996 and specialist predators (Yellow legged gulls) culled since 2004.