Skip to main content

Data from: A meta-analysis of global avian survival across species and latitude

Cite this dataset

Scholer, Micah; Strimas-Mackey, Matt; Jankowski, Jill (2020). Data from: A meta-analysis of global avian survival across species and latitude [Dataset]. Dryad.


Tropical birds are thought to be longer lived than many temperate species. We explored the idea of higher survival at tropical latitudes and whether extrinsic climate factors and intrinsic traits helped explain this pattern using a meta-analytical approach. The dataset consists of 949 estimates from 204 studies of avian survival from both New World and Old World biogeographical realms.


Data were collected from the primary literature using Web of Science Core Collections and Google Scholar. We extracted data on survival and its associated standard error from each paper, as well as information on the study location and species intrinsic traits. When information on species traits was not included in the publication, we used data from standard reference databases (i.e., Handbook of Birds of the World, Elton Traits database). All climatic variables were downloaded from WorldClim.

Usage notes

The column entitled 'auk_used' refers to studies that were conducted over broad-spatial scales. In these cases, we used the R package auk to delineate species ranges based on eBird records. We then took the centroid of the breeding range as the latitude and longitude for that species. When multiple estimates on adult survival were available from the same paper, we took the geometric mean of those estimates (see column geomean_used).  Detailed information on how we assembled the dataset can be found under the methods section in the associated Ecology Letters publication.


Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council, Award: Discovery Grant F11-05365