Biodiv Sci ›› 2021, Vol. 29 ›› Issue (9): 1149-1153.  DOI: 10.17520/biods.2021201

• Data Papers • Previous Articles     Next Articles

A dataset on the life-history and ecological traits of Chinese birds

Yanping Wang1,*(), Yunfeng Song1, Yuxi Zhong1, Chuanwu Chen1, Yuhao Zhao2, Di Zeng2, Yiru Wu2, Ping Ding2   

  1. 1 College of Life Sciences, Nanjing Normal University, Nanjing 210023
    2 College of Life Sciences, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310058
  • Received:2021-05-19 Accepted:2021-07-14 Online:2021-09-20 Published:2021-09-13
  • Contact: Yanping Wang


China has a total of 1,445 bird species and is one of the countries with the richest bird diversity in the world. Species traits strongly determine the species' ability to persist in a variety of environments and are fundamental to ecological, evolutionary and conservational research. Therefore, it is important to collecting data on life-history, ecological and geographic traits of Chinese birds. However, so far, no efforts have been made to gather such trait data of Chinese birds. The aim of this study is thus to provide a comprehensive dataset of natural history traits for Chinese birds. We collected data on 17 traits related to geographical, morphological, ecological and life-history features for the 1,445 species of Chinese birds. Between 2015 and 2021, we compiled data by systematically searching all related literature, including academic ornithological books, field guides, peer-reviewed scientific publications, Baidu Scholar, Google Scholar and specialized websites. The 17 traits included body mass, body length, bill length, wing length, tail length, tarsus length, primary diet, clutch size, egg size, egg volume, nest site, nest type, flocking status, migrant status, endemic status, biogeographic distribution and the number of provinces distributed of Chinese birds. However, data completeness varied from 60.83% to 100% among traits. Except for migrant status, endemic status, biogeographic distribution and the number of provinces distributed, the data on other traits were incomplete to some extent. Flocking status was only available for 60.83% of Chinese birds. Our dataset is the latest and most complete one on species traits of Chinese birds. The dataset will be helpful for advancing the research fields of ecology, evolution, biogeography, and conservation biology in Chinese birds.

Key words: birds, life-history traits, ecological traits, biogeographic distribution, morphological traits, breeding traits