The pattern of autumn migration of the Robin was studied through an analysis of daily dynamics for the birds caught in the years 1984–1997 at four ringing stations (two on the Baltic coast and two in inland Poland). In a given year, migration dynamics was found to be distinctly similar at all stations. It showed conspicuous consistence (± 2 days) in the dates with peak numbers. This could be explained by assuming that Robins take off at the same time across a large breeding ground, and arrive almost simultaneously at stopover sites located over extensive areas. Moreover, migration dynamics from year to year at a given station was also remarkably similar, though this phenomenon was more distinct at the inland stations than at the coastal ones. Day-to-day fluctuations in numbers were on an average the highest at the coastal station most exposed to variable weather, the lowest at the inland stations, and intermediate at the more “sheltered” of the coastal station. The paper discusses the extent to which such results can reflect the influence of weather conditions on passage, or else a precise internal (physiological and genetic) mechanism responsible for the timing of migration.
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Vol. 40 • No. 2