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Phil Hockey - Memorial Special Issue

Ostrich (the Journal of African Ornithology) would like to publish a special issue in memory of Phil Hockey and the significant contributions that he made to African ornithology.

We are inviting contributions of manuscripts on a topic relevant to Phil’s research, especially coastal and estuarine bird ecology, the ecology of bird movement and migration, avian life history evolution, the ecology of rarity (especially distinguishing natural rarity from anthropogenically mediated rarity) with the aim of promoting appropriate conservation strategies, and analysing and predicting avian responses to climate change. Colleagues and past or current students are particularly encouraged to offer papers, especially where Phil may be a co-author.

For further information please contact Rob Little (, the Memorial Issue Editor, or Lizanne Roxburgh (, the Ostrich Editor-in-chief.

We would like to publish this issue in early 2015. Manuscripts should ideally be submitted by the end of November 2014. We request that anyone intending to submit a paper for this special issue please send an intention to submit to Rob Little as soon as you can so that we can have a foresight of the possible content of the issue.

Manuscripts can be submitted online at When asked for a special issue type, please select “Phil Hockey”.

Please report any sightings of ringed Swift Terns

Swift Terns are one of the few locally-breeding seabirds whose numbers are increasing., To help understand the main factors driving the positive trend of this species, a team of researchers from the Percy FitzPatrick Institute and the Animal Demography Unit at the University of Cape Town marked 500 Swift Tern chicks from Robben Island in April 2013 and 2014 with metal and individually engraved colour rings. In 2013, members of the public reported how these birds dispersed, providing information on the fledging success, survival and dispersal of juvenile Swift Terns, which were re-sighted from Namibia to the Eastern Cape. Gathering dispersal records is a time consuming but important task that relies on assistance from volunteers across southern Africa.

Rings in 2014 are orange and yellow (with black text) and green and blue (with white text), and are engraved with an “A” followed by a letter and a number (e.g. AU2). Rings from 2013 are yellow and white (with black text) and green and blue (with white text), and bear a code of one letter and one number (e.g. U2).  The majority of the colour rings are top-down and all are on the right leg.

If you see any ringed birds please record their location as accurately as possible (ideally GPS), the date and time of sighting, ring colour, letters on the ring (if legible) and age class (juvenile or immature). If a bird is found dead, please also record the number of the metal ring. Send the information to Davide Gaglio at

Thanks for your help!


Last modified: 2014/07/03
Copyright: Percy FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology 2014
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