Biodiv Sci ›› 2021, Vol. 29 ›› Issue (11): 1539-1553.  DOI: 10.17520/biods.2021215

• Reviews • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Effects of urbanization on bird nesting: A review

Fangyuan Lan1, Xingjian Ma2, Jinyao Lu3, Yuguo Li2, Rusong Chai4, Xiang Li2, Yiou Luo5, Yuze Zhang2, Ziling Ye2, Changjian Fu2, Wenshuang Bao2, Li Li3,*(), Xiaoying Xing2,*()   

  1. 1 College of Forestry, Northeast Forestry University, Harbin 150040
    2 College of Wildlife and Protected Area, Northeast Forestry University, Harbin 150040
    3 Hunan Biodiversity Conservation Center, Changsha 410116
    4 Forest Botanical Garden of Heilongjiang Province, Harbin 150040
    5 Aulin College, Northeast Forestry University, Harbin 150040
  • Received:2021-05-26 Accepted:2021-08-10 Online:2021-11-20 Published:2021-10-19
  • Contact: Li Li,Xiaoying Xing


Background & Aim: Nesting behavior is important for birds because this stage is critical for breeding success. Since urbanization is expanding worldwide, birds living in cities face huge challenges but the urban environment can also provide living opportunities. This review summarizes bird nesting behaviors in cities, analyzing the influence of factors such as climate, food resources, nest site availability, predation pressure, pollution, and anthropogenic disturbance on bird nesting based on publications in Biblioshiny programme.
Summary: This study demonstrates that urbanization influences bird nesting period, nest site and nest material selection significantly, and that spatio-temporal nesting ranges and nesting materials differ between urban and rural birds. We highlight the need to evaluate whether city birds are well adapted or negatively affected by urbanization, which would require specific analysis of target populations and habitat conditions.
Perspectives: We should propose effective and specific suggestions to protect city birds during urbanization based on our research results, instead of simply providing general guidelines. Developing citizen science to solve practical issues in urban animal ecology is a promising direction for the future.

Key words: birds, urbanization, nesting ecology, nest building duration, nest-site selection, artificial nest-box, nest material