Congratulations and warm wishes to our students Inbal and Yuval!

05 May 2020

To Inbal for the birth of her son, Nuri, and to Yuval for the birth of his son, Aviv!  

Congratulations and warm wishes to the head of our lab Nir Sapir

05 May 2020

For his promotion to Associate Professor!

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New publications

Feather moult and bird appearance are correlated with global warming over the last 200 years

11 May 2020

Kiat, Y., Vortman, Y., and N. Sapir. (2019) Feather moult and bird appearance are correlated with global warming over the last 200 years. Nature Communications 10 (2540). doi: ABSTRACT...

Causes and consequences of facultative sea crossing in a soaring migrant

11 May 2020

Becciu, P., Rotics, S., Horvitz, N., Kaatz, M., Fiedler, W., Zurell, D., Flack, A., Jeltsch, F., Wikelski, M., Nathan, R., and N. Sapir. 2020. Causes and consequences of facultative sea...

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Age-Dependent Modulation of Songbird Summer Feather Molt by Temporal and Functional Constraints

Kiat, Y. and N. Sapir. Age-dependent modulation of songbird summer feather moult by temporal and functional constraints. (2017) The American Naturalist 189 (2):


Time constraints influence various ecological, life-history, and demographic properties of individuals and populations of many species throughout the annual cycle. Feather molt is a timely undertaking that is considered among the three most energydemanding processes in the life cycle of birds. To deal with time pressure, passerines may shorten their molt duration, using three non–mutually exclusive mechanisms: (1) replacing only part of the plumage, (2) increasing the speed of molt, and (3) postponing the renewal of some or all the plumage to a later season (i.e., from the summer to the overwintering period). We used a comparative approach by measuring 12,349 individuals from 134 passerine species to explore how feather molt of juvenile and adult passerines is evolutionarily modulated under time constraints. The results indicate that breeding at northern latitudes and long-distance migration limit the time available
for molt and that the consequences of time constraints were age dependent. While the duration of adult summer molt decreased, the extent, rather than the duration, of juvenile molt declined under time constraints. This study highlights the importance of considering time constraints in order to enhance the understanding of selective forces that shape life-history processes and their consequences throughout the annual routine.

About us

We are a group of scientists devoted to the study of animal flight, including animal movement ecology, behavior, physiology and biomechanics. We study wild animals in the field and in the lab using a diversity of research approaches. We welcome applications for M.Sc. and Ph.D. studies and post-doctoral work in our group at the Department of Evolutionary and Environmental Biology at the University of Haifa.