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Nikita Chernetsov

Leading research fellow

Born 28 September 1972 in Leningrad, USSR.

E-mail: nchernetsov@bioryb.koenig.ru

I am working in two main fields: (1) stopover ecology and behaviour of migrating passerines; (2) migratory orientation and navigation of birds.
My work on stopover ecology and behaviour includes studies of landfall and departure decisions, methods of estimating stopover duration and fuel deposition rate, habitat requirements of migrants at stopovers.
The work on avian orientation and navigation focuses on compasses available to migrants and on how birds translate their innate migratory programme into actual movements between the breeding and the wintering areas.


  • 2005: Post-doc at the Department of Behavioural Ecology, Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan.
  • 2000―2002: Post-doc at the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology (Vogelwarte Radolfzell), Germany, with Prof. Peter Berthold.
  • 1999 ― present: junior research fellow at the Zoological Institute, Russ. Acad. Sci. Research fellow since 2000, senior research fellow since 2004.
  • 1994―1996: research assistant at the Biological Station Rybachy, Zoological Institute.


  • 2000: Awarded a Ph.D. on 'Migratory strategies of Acrocephalus warblers within Europe' from the Zoological Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences, St. Petersburg.
  • 1994: Master of Science (diploma with honours) in Biology from St. Petersburg State University.

Selected publications in English:

Chernetsov N. 2012. Passerine migration: stopovers and flight. Springer Berlin Heidelberg. 184 p. Link

Chernetsov N. 2011. Daytime movements of nocturnal migrants at stopover between two nearby capture sites. J. Ornithol. 152: 1007-1011. Link

Chernetsov N., Kishkinev D., Kosarev V., Bolshakov C.V. 2011. Not all songbirds calibrate their magnetic compass from twilight cues: a telemetry study. J. Exp. Biol. 214: 2540-2543. Link

Kishkinev D., Chernetsov N., Mouritsen H. 2010. A double-clock or jetlag mechanism is unlikely to be involved in detection of east–west displacements in a long-distance avian migrant. Auk 127: 773-780. Link

Chernetsov N. 2010. Recent experimental data on the energy costs of avian flight call for a revision of optimal migration theory. Auk 127: 232-234. Link

Chernetsov N. 2010. Migratory stopovers of Wrens Troglodytes troglodytes on the south-eastern Baltic coast. Avian Ecology and Behaviour 17: 13-22. PDF

Chernetsov N., Sokolov L.V., Kosarev V. 2009. Local survival rates of Pied Flycatchers Ficedula hypoleuca depend on their immigration status. Avian Ecology and Behaviour 16: 11-20. PDF

Grinkevich V., Chernetsov N., Mukhin A. 2009. Juvenile Reed Warblers Acrocephalus scirpaceus see the world but settle close to home. Avian Ecology and Behaviour 16: 3-10. PDF

Chernetsov N., Kishkinev D., Gashkov S., Kosarev V., Bolshakov C.V. 2008. Migratory programme of juvenile pied flycatchers, Ficedula hypoleuca, from Siberia implies a detour around Central Asia. Animal Behaviour 75: 539-545. Link

Mukhin A., Chernetsov N., Kishkinev D. 2008. Acoustic information as a distant cue for habitat recognition by nocturnally migrating passerines during landfall. Behavioral Ecology 19: 716-723. Link

Chernetsov N., Kishkinev D., Mouritsen H. 2008. A long-distance avian migrant compensates for longitudinal displacement during spring migration. Current Biology 18: 188-190. Link

Bojarinova J., Ilves A., Chernetsov N., Leivits A. 2008. Body mass, moult and migration speed of the Goldcrest Regulus regulus in relation to the timing of migration at different sites of the migration route. Ornis Fennica 85: 55-65. PDF

Bolshakov C.V., Chernetsov N., Mukhin A., Bulyuk V.N., Kosarev V., Ktitorov P., Leoke D., Tsvey A. 2007. Time of nocturnal departures in European robins, Erithacus rubecula, in relation to celestial cues, season, stopover duration and fat stores. Animal Behaviour 74: 855-865. Link

Chernetsov N., Bulyuk V.N., Ktitorov P. 2007. Migratory stopovers of passerines in an oasis at the crossroads of the African and Indian flyways. Ringing and Migration 23: 243-251. Link

Chernetsov N. 2006. Habitat selection by nocturnal passerine migrants enroute: mechanisms and results. Journal of Ornithology 147: 185-191. Link

Chernetsov N., Chromik W., Dolata P.T., Profus P., Tryjanowski P. 2006. Sex-related natal dispersal of White Storks (Ciconia ciconia) in Poland: how far and where to? Auk 123: 1103-1109. Link

Bulyuk V.N, Chernetsov N. 2005. Nocturnal passage of passerines in Western Kazakhstan in autumn. Journal of Arid Environments 61: 603-607. Link

Chernetsov N. 2005. Spatial behavior of medium and long-distance migrants at stopovers studied by radio tracking. In: Bauchinger U., Goymann W., Jenni-Eiermann S. (eds.) Bird Hormones and Bird Migrations: Analyzing Hormones in Droppings and Egg Yolks and Assessing Adaptations in Long-Distance Migration. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 1046: 242-252. Link

Yosef R. and Chernetsov N. 2005. Longer is fatter: body mass changes of migrant Reed Warblers (Acrocephalus scirpaceus) staging at Eilat, Israel. Ostrich 76: 142-147. Link

Chernetsov N., Berthold P. and Querner U. 2004. Migratory orientation of first-year white storks (Ciconia ciconia): inherited information and social interactions. Journal of Experimental Biology 207: 937-943. Link

Yosef R. and Chernetsov N. 2004. Stopover ecology of migratory Sedge Warblers (Acrocephalus schoenobaenus) at Eilat, Israel. Ostrich 75: 52-56. Link

Chernetsov N. 2004. Intraspecific variation of wing pointedness index in juvenile Acrocephalus warblers in the southeastern Baltic. Journal of Ornithology 145: 105-108. Link

Chernetsov N.S., Skutina E.A., Bulyuk V.N. and Tsvey A.L. 2004. Optimal stopover decisions of migrating birds under variable stopover quality: model predictions and the field data. Zhurnal Obschei Biologii 65: 211-217.

Chernetsov N., Mukhin A. and Ktitorov P. 2004. Contrasting spatial behaviour of two long-distance passerine migrants at spring stopovers. Avian Ecology and Behaviour 12: 53-61. PDF

Bolshakov C.V. and Chernetsov N. 2004. Initiation of nocturnal flight in two species of long-distance migrants (Ficedula hypoleucaand Acrocephalus schoenobaenus) in spring: a telemetry study. Avian Ecology and Behaviour 12: 63-73. PDF

Bolshakov C., Bulyuk V. and Chernetsov N. 2003. Spring nocturnal migration of Reed Warblers Acrocephalus scirpaceus: departure, landing and body condition. Ibis 145: 106-112. Link

Bolshakov C.V., Bulyuk V.N., Mukhin A. and Chernetsov N. 2003. Body mass and fat reserves of Sedge Warblers during vernal nocturnal migration: departure versus arrival. Journal of Field Ornithology 74: 81-89. Link

Chernetsov N. 2002. Spatial behaviour of first-year Blackcaps (Sylvia atricapilla) during the pre-migratory period and during autumn migratory stopovers. Journal of Ornithology 143: 424-429. Link

Selected publications in other languages:

Чернецов Н.С. 2010. Миграция воробьиных птиц: остановки и полёт. М., Т-во научных изданий КМК. 173 с. Link 1, Link 2

Панов И.Н., Чернецов Н.С. 2010. Миграционная стратегия варакушки (Luscinia svecica) в Восточной Фенноскандии. Сообщение 1: Основные параметры миграционных остановок. Труды Зоологического института РАН 314 (1): 93-104. PDF

Панов И.Н., Чернецов Н.С. 2010. Миграционная стратегия варакушки (Luscinia svecica) в Восточной Фенноскандии. Сообщение 2: Реакция на акустические маркеры и выбор биотопа на миграционной остановке. Труды Зоологического института РАН 314 (2): 173-183. PDF

Чернецов Н.С., Булюк В.Н., Ктиторов П.С. 2010. Роль Джаныбекского оазиса как места миграционных остановок дендрофильных видов воробьиных птиц. Поволжский экологический журнал 2: 204-216. PDF

Chernetsov N., Kaatz M., Querner U., Berthold P. 2005. Vierjaehrige Satelliten-Telemetrie eines Weissstorchs Ciconia ciconiavom Selbstaendigwerden an - Beschreibung einer Odyssee. Vogelwarte 43: 39-42. PDF

Мухин А.Л., Чернецов Н.С., Кишкинев Д.А. 2005. Песня тростниковой камышевки, Acrocephalus scirpaceus (Aves, Sylviidae), как акустический маркер водно-болотного биотопа во время миграции. Зоол. журн. 84 (8): 995-1002. PDF

Чернецов Н.С. 2003. Экология и поведение воробьиных птиц на миграционных остановках: постановка проблемы. Орнитология 30: 136-146. PDF

Чернецов Н.С., Титов Н.В. 2003. Питание и стратегия весенней миграции зарянки, Erithacus rubecula (Aves, Turdidae), в юго-восточной Прибалтике. Зоол. журн. 82 (12): 1525-1529. PDF

Титов Н.В., Чернецов Н.С. 1999. Стохастические модели как новый метод оценки продолжительности миграционных остановок птиц. Успехи соврем. биологии 119 (4): 396-403. PDF


  • 2003: Vladimir Sokolov Memorial Award from the Russian Academy of Sciences and Vladimir Sokolov Foundation.
  • 2001: 'Outstanding Young Researcher' award and a grant from the Government of Russia.
  • 1994: Kessler Award from the St. Petersburg Society of Naturalists for the MSc thesis on 'Comparative analysis of migratory strategies of Acrocephalus warblers on the Courish Spit'

Member of Editorial Board:

Journal of Ornithology

Proceedings of the Zoological Institute RAS, St. Petersburg

Avian Ecology and Behaviour

Biological Letters, Poznan

Ringing and Migration

Teaching experience:

2001―2004: Lecturing at St. Petersburg State University: "Selected aspects of avian ecology" (graduate students).


Nikita Chernetsov, Ph.D.
Leading research fellow
Biological Station Rybachy
Zoological Institute, Rybachy 238535
Kaliningrad Region, Russia
Phone +7 011 5041251, fax +7 011 5041345
Mobile +7 921 743 5141
E-mail nchernetsov@bioryb.koenig.ru