Chi Yeung Choi

Doctor of Philosophy, (Ecology)
Study Completed: 2015
College of Sciences


Thesis Title
The Northward Migration Stopover Ecology of Bar-Tailed Godwits and Great Knots in the Yalu Jiang Estuary National Nature Reserve, China

Read article at Massey Research Online: MRO icon

Shorebirds migrate vast distances annually and refuel en route at a limited number of threatened sites in the East Asian-Australasian Flyway. Mr Choi found that more than 100,000 Bar-tailed Godwits and Great Knots used Yalu Jiang Estuary in China during northward migration. The diets of both species were dominated by a single bivalve mollusc species, Potamocorbula laevis, which constituted more than three quarters of the total tidal flat benthic biomass. Ample food resources rather than niche differentiation enabled the coexistence of these species. However, both species (Great Knots in particular) suffered a digestive bottleneck when processing whole shellfish. Shorebird predation had a significant impact on shellfish numbers and shellfish recruitment varied across different years. Mr Choi’s study has provided important information for the conservation management of coastal wetlands in the Yellow Sea.

Associate Professor Phil Battley
Professor Murray Potter